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HWi anniversary number 

■ 4 “ St "f • N W V«*.M. N. Y,, by Variely, Ibc. Annual .kbKtiy, ion, » 10 . Start. topi... 25 <*»,.. 

Entcrtd .«cond«la„ gf?' » N.„ York. N. V. Wr,b. March * *£ 


VOL. lfKV NO. 5 


ectroivics, which is extending tKe dimen- 
sions of show business through spectacular 
a v * nces i n sound and pictures, is perform- 
j n S in theatres and concert halls as well as 
m of homes throughout the land. 

e motion picture, vaudeville, drama, 
and music have taken Electronics into 
tracts . new art forms have been created 

. . . performances have been revitalized and 
performers find new opportunities for their 
talents . . radio and television sparkle with 

Now comes RCAs magnetic tape record- 
ing of television programs. In black and 
white and in color, it heralds a new era of 
electronic photography that has great possi- 

bilities first for TV broadcasting and, later, 
for national' defense, for the motion picture 
and theatre industry, for industry in general, 
for education, and for home entertainment. 

Electronics merits its stardom . . ; and 
wherever you find Electronics you find 
RCA, the pioneer in this phenomenal science 
that keeps the arts apace with progress. 

World leader in radio — first in television 

Forty -eighth J^&RIErfY Anniversary 

V©.fe~193 No. 5 




Come to Britain in ’54; No Festival No 


Coronation, Not Even English Spoken 



In England, women do not chat- 
ter. They natter, or have a natter. 

Tlu* English do not normally like 
anything over-publicized. This 
makes it difficult for advertising 
agencies, sponsored television, mo- 
tion picture publicists, rising poli- 
ticians. Douglas Fairbanks Jr., 
salesmen, debutantes, film stars, 
Palladium headliners, Cinema- 
Scope, Riviera party-givers, Com- 
munism. American necktie manu- 
facturers. and Great Lovers. There 
are a leu exceptions, but only a 
few. The Royal Family, the 
Comet jet. Mt. Everest, Sir Win- 
ston Churchill, Guinness, and 

They applaud understatement. 
Tlrs endears them to Bing Crosby 
and Jack Benny, the throwaway 
joke, anybody who stammers, the 
dirty old raincoat, small cars, 
backroom scientists, Rose Murphy, 
dealmutes. Manx cats, shy murder- 
ers. gentlemen burglars and stiff- 

They never say: pip-pip, by Jove, 
what-ho. toodle-oo, cheerie-bye, 
and all that sort of rot, don’tcha 
know. They say: get cracking, 
okay, chcero, righto, good show, 
bloody, ruddy, sticky, ducky and I 
couldn’t care less. When they wish 
to sound slightly whimsical, which 
is often, they use "me” instead of 

They still use rhyming slang. A 
(Continued on page 87) 

Uncut Features Aired 
Freely Into Homes But 
Censored for Screens 

v , 1( Washington. 

™ct that television is not sub- 
ject to any official bluepencilling is 
rammed across in a document filed 

Jh* h ni l,( - S> Su P rem e Court by 
the Motion Picture Assn, of Amer- 

,ca and Independent Theatre Own- 

u*r i ° n- 9 b '°‘ Is made that 

me 1 V is unencumbered and un- 
eshainod. films are subject to the 

i«a°U sl i S,oncies ’ ex P*nse and al- 
ij* ed ln( ‘ k °f logic of censorship 
b0 'rds in six states. 

Argument was made in the form 
an amici curiae brief which 
thoV ,n * ie b *Sh court to reverse 
the Columbia film, 
it- n ( , ),U0 - A favorable ruling, 

fo. n J )|H r , W ° Uld PUt 30 end t0 a11 
mom ( f . oca ! and state govern- 

tion r? n n° rS u ip of pix - Pre senta- 
first ,! lu brief re P r esents the 
teami>i/ ni ' ^ an exbib group has 
trihuit W1 h the Producer-dis- 
»,, .;, s ;;. s n a cour ‘ fight against 

i a ' RUC : d that from 1948 to 
over rv Pt 1,836 films shown 
neve,- u * n 0hl °- ? f th ese, 546 had 
484 t, n u n subm itted to censors; 
ori l ;! r n 4 submi tted (prior to 

cm? hut sh °wings ) and 

Sated t or ere . sbown in unexpur- 
iive fa m rM ? n , in the home via TV; 
Ohio i l0 ‘; ejected by the 
PrcM-, M?i, d f Censors for theatre 
'duhon were televised. 

Red Barber’s Surgery 
On Ear After Gridcasts 

CBS sports counselor Red Bar- 
ber will be operated on Jan. 14 to 
restore partial loss of hearing in 
his left ear. He'll enter the New 
York Eye & Ear Infirmary Jan. 13, 
remain for 10 days and convalesce* 
at his Scarborough (N. Y. ) home 
all of February. 

Barber is now' in Florida w'here 
he covered the Orange Bowl grideo 
on New Year’s Day for CBS-TV 
and will go to Mobile for the web's 
radio coverage of the Senior Bowl 
game on Saturday (9). His final 
pre-hospital activity will be at 
noon Jan. 13 when he'll give a 
talk at Trinity Church. In March 
he’ll go to St. Petersburg, Fla.', to 
ready himself for his new baseball 
assignment as telecaster of the 
N. Y. Yankee games. 

Look For a Big 
Black & White ’54, 
Sez RCA’s Folsom 

Although the nation's economy 
has reverted from a sellers’ to a 
buyers’ market, and despite intro- 
duction of color television, -black 
and white set sales will "continue 
in the millions” in 1954, RCA 
president Frank M. Folsom said in 
a year-end statement this week. 
Folsom added that RCA will ac- 
celerate its promotional activities 
to achieve high black and w'hite 
sales next year. 

Such sales, he said, would occur 
because of the "orderly introduc- 
tion of compatible color” and be- 
cause of the compatibility features 
of the new tint system. Reporting 
on other color developments, he 
said RCA had received by Dec. 31 
orders for color telecasting equip- 
ment (for network-transmitted 
shows) from one or more stations 
in 58 cities. Equipment for color 
film projection is also being de- 
veloped, with one of three systems 
already In commercial production 
and the other tw'O still in the de- 
velopment stage. 

Discussing the business pros- 
pects for 1954, Folsom emphasized 
the fact that while the "14-year- 
old sellers’ market is gone,” the 
coming year "can be good for busi- 
ness.” He said RCA is preparing to 
reshape its productive capacity to 
"increase efficiency” in order to 
enhance the values of its products 
to the consumer, is streamlining 
its operations and selling organiza- 
tions and is concentrating on 
building stronger sales staffs. 


In 1953, show' business shifted 
faster than a Moscow delegate to 
the United Nations. 

More than any season of recent 
memory, 1953 lived up to the show 
biz adage that there’s nothing more 
permanent than change. 

It was a year of great, risks and 
shifts and innovations. It was also 
a year with humor, for the business 
there is no business like always de- 
lights to .augh at itself. And, in so 
doing, show biz helps set a national 
laugh pattern. This was the year of 
Jelke and Jorgensen jokes, of God- 
frey’s "humility,” of Italian, hair- 
cuts, scrabble and parakeets. 

More seriously, 1953 saw revolu- 
tions in the technology of enter-, 
tainment and that Greatest Show’ 
on Earth — the British Coronation. 

Best of all, as regards the pro- 
ducers and exhibitors of motion 
pictures, a reawakened and re- 
vitalized industry met the chal- 
lenge of television and theatre 
closings head on. There was a 
happy improvement from the pre- 
ceding year’s lethargy when too 
often one heard the supercilious 
crack, "Oh, I haven’t seen a movie 
for six months.” 

Lighter values of 1953 embraced 
such items as Marilyn Monroe as 
the continuing No. 1 space-grabber 
(Zsa Zsa isn’t a bad runner-up! > and 
Dr. Kinsey and Polly Adler among 

(Continued on page 58) 

For ‘Faded’ Paper-Mate 

Eddie Cantor is talking a radio- 
TV consultation post with Paper- , 

Mate, the. ballpoint pen people, 
j separate and apart from his own 
radio and. video activities. That 
SI, 000 check aw’ard to Cpl. Robert 
j Weston on Cantor’s past Sunday 
• show’ for Colgate, which caused 
I NBC executive producer Sam Ful- 
ler to “fade" Cantor’s cuffo, plug 
for Paper-Mate, was the result of 
the company volunteering the 
check, award. 

Cantor wanted to know’ why NBC 
and Colgate weren’t consistent Lawrence Langner 
about alleged cuffo commercials, 
citing the Sylvania award he pre- 
sented on the same program to 
Donald O'Connor, since Sylvania 
has been getting into many pro- 
grams via the device of a plaque 
or a clock. 


St. Louis. 

RKO’s "The French Line" 
opened here last week without a 
Production Code seal and with 
police officers in the audience but 
no action was immediately taken to 
condemn the film as "obscene” or 
to seize the print. Rumors of such 
drastic action circulated through 
town after a denunciation of the 
film starring Jane Russell w’as read 
from every Roman Catholic pulpit 
in this preponderantly (65%) 
Catholic community. Archbishop 
Joseph E. Ritter warned Catholics 
it would be a "mortal sin" to see 
the pic. 

Police officers departed quietly 
after the first screening stating 
only that they would file a writ- 
ten report to police chief Jere- 
miah O’Connell, w'ho had given 
them their assignment, <since. 
St. Louis has no official censor. 

With all the publicity, "French 
Line” opened to SRO the first day. 

Early Deadline 

This edition of Varifty 
went to press ahead of the 
normal Tuesday deadline. 

Production detail, binding, 
etc., and the size of this 48th 
Anniversary Number made it 
necessary to omit . certain 
standard departments. 


Thinks Flick 

Hollywood’s production c ode 
needs no changes but could stand 
a broader and more generous in- 
terpretation, says Dr. Hugh M. 
Flick, the New York censor. 

Flick opined. last week t hat the 

| code could stand both tightening 
up and liberalizing. "They should 
start cutting some of the bru- 
tality out of gangster pictures and 
i westerns," he thought. “To us 
that’s a far more worrisome thing 
I than the moral issue. This is 
: where films really contribute to 
juvenile delinquency.” 

Trouble with the code handling 
as it’s practiced now is that inter- 
pretations are given on the basis 
| of "past performance” rather than 
j on a picture-by-^picture basis, Flick 
I declared. "That’s a mistake. Each 
picture should be judged on its 
own. merit. We run into this prob- 
lem all the time.” 

He said he was disturbed oyer 
the "French Line” incident since 
it appeared as an attempt to capi- 
talize on the code issue. 


( Co-Director , The Theatre Guild) 

In my opinion, the most im- 
portant thought we can hold for 
the year 1954 is a welcome to the 
newest playwrights. It is they 

who represent 
the theatre of 
the future, 
and by the na- 
ture . of .. our 
w e 1 c o m e to 
them may well 
be determined 
the question 
of whether we 
will have any 
theatre in the 
future at all. 

The past of 
our theatre is 
undoubtedly .impojlant. It is the 
origin of the traditions and stand- 
ards which have been passed on 
from generation to generation. Be- 
hind our past stands Shakespeare 
to set a standard of poetry and 
beauty which has never been 
eclipsed. In the future are the 
plays, written and unw’ritten, .with 
which oncoming generations will 
enrich the theatre. The present is 
merely that place where the future 
and the past intermingle and pro- 
duce the .theatrical harvest of to- 
day. Whether that harvest be rich 
or poor, worthy or unworthy, de- 
pends on us. 

When we w’elcome the new au- 
thor with production costs of be- 
tween. $60,000 and $70,000 per play, 
lor example, we are welcoming him 
with a shower of brickbats; for we 
expect him to meet an economic 
competition with which, either be- 

( Continued on page 87) 

Higher Education Quick 
To Exploit Sexsation 


That the University of Minne- 
sota Film Society follow's the news 
of show biz has been demonstrated 
before now. Newest example, fol- 
lowing Marlene Dietrich’s sexsa- 
tiona.l nightclub costume at Las 
Vegas, sans la bra, is this: 

Society is presenting an. on 
campus revival of three old Die- 
trich films, "Blue Angel,” "Seven 
Sinners” and "Destry Rides 

It’s Sir George Robey; 

Now 85, Music Hall Star 
Never Played States 


George Robey, veteran favorite 
of the British music halls, is a sur- 
prise designation for knighthood 
on Queen Elizabeth's New Year 
honors list. The new Sir George 
was born Sept. 20. 1869 and made 
his debut in 1891. His war work, 
won him, in 1919, the rank of Com- 
mander of the British Empire and 
in 1937 he was appointed to the 
General Advisory Council of the 
1 British Broadcasting Co. i Robey is 
also a painter of oils and has cx- 
: hibited at the Royal Academy.) 

I Although a headliner in British 
and colonial show biz for well over 
i 50 years, Robey never played in 
the United Stales. In his prime he 
was literally “booked solid” lour 
and . five years ahead and that fact, 
plus some diffidence on his part,, 
precluded A in e r i c a n bookings. 
Many showwise folk thought Robey 
would have clicked in the States, 
as did many another London musi- 
| cal figure. 

! A Companion of Honor , was be- 
. slowed on John Christie, founder 
■ of the Giyndebourne Opera House, 




No Tunes Like Show Tunes 


You may not think so, but the | the lovers of old and obscure show 

.decor of a powder room can some- mVmUumtWe time, have 

times impose intellectual standar ds. seCn and heard about some glam- 
If I sound outrageously authority- 0 rous powder rooms, like the ones 

live about this, with the solid gold fixtures, for 

- — fiew8f^A*l*r •jgj*' VeigftYTPnt7"CrrrrT-^ which eve rybody 
The walls of this bathroom, you knows, for God’s : sake!— but of 
coo wnrp ' H prorated not with any . such recondite enchantments as 

it is only be- ; 
cause, for all ; 
of a decade, 
on e of the 
bathrooms in 
my apartment 
was the cause 
of many an 
otherw i s c 
worthy . c i t i - 
zeri’s b c i n g 
drummed out 
of my particu-. 

instance, but mine yielded to none 
in the matter of nostalgia. There 
were people who remained in It 
so long recapturing the past that 
we pondered sending them supplies 
for the winter. Finally, though, 
they would appear, their eyes 
radiant, yet. brimming with unshed 
tears too, and say a little breath- 
lessly, "God, what tunes The Boys 
from Syracuse’ had!” And they 
would hum snatches— mot of "Fall- 
ing in Love with Love" or "This 

see, were • decorated not with any , 
conventional papering, but with 
sheet music covers of old and ob- . 
seure show tunes— tunes capable 
of summoning up the vanished 
years in all their splendor; tunes 
that would suddenly flood the 
heart with remembrance of things 
past. So that for , a little while— 
and merely looking at them, mind 
you— you . would be unmindful of 
the present and a 1 ! its tomorrows. 
With their hills to be paid and love 
affairs resolved and ulcers cured. 
For a little while you knew on sour 
les iwiffcs d’antan, and I do not 
mean d’antan Walker either. 

Somebody would stroll inno- 
cently into that room and all of a 
sudden staring him in the face 
would be lingering beguilements 
like “Mountn'n Greenery'’ and 
"Experiment" and "Sam and De- 
lilah.” And if he were any 'kind of 
man, how could he be but stabbed 
a little, by a montage so redolent 
of the silvery’ years. And often it 
would be strange to observe the ; 
expression of utter helplessness 
on his face as he came back into 
the den. for it was strictly a don’t- 
tell - me-ril-think-of-it-in-a-minute- ; 
myself expression. But finally, vn- . 
able to endure it any longer, the 
poor wretch wou’d break down and 
confess that he just couldn't seem 
to remember the lyric of "By 
Strauss." Or maybe it wou’d bo 
of “As Though You Were There” 
or "Blah Blah. Blah." In any case, 
this sort of memory laose did no: 
automatically cashier, him out .of 
our company. ? lore often than not, 
indeed, we gave him the lyric, bo.h 
verse and choi'U'?. It was on’y 
when someone c '-.erged' to admit 
he didn't knev t'loro i i::rc 
songs that we immediately took a 
dim, view, of him and his' stagger- 
ing ignorance. And let someone do 
that sort of thing often enough and 
it was off with his chevrons, and 
never again woiEd lie intrude his 
shady character mio our chowder 
& marching socV.y. One niehf a 
seemingly bright young man from 
the music department at Time an- 
nounced that he n-vor knew Gersh- 
win had written a .tune called "I 
Got The You-Don’t-Know-the-Kalf- 
of-It-Dearie Blues." That was going i 
just a bit too far, . what with its 
having been a Fred & Adele As- 
taire item. After the t, seeing this 
churlon the street, we woidd r.od 
curtly and let it go at that. We. 

such recondite enchantments as 
“The Shortest Day in the Year" 
and "You Have Cast Your Shadow 
on the Sea." Nobody messed around 
with us. boy! . 

S onic Esoteric Samples | 
If. people happened to. know 
show-type tunes as well as. merely 
show tunes, why, that was dandy 
too. because show-type tunes are, 
if anything, even more esoteric, 
being for example, along the lines 
of the muted rapture of Bart How- 
ard’s “If You Leave Paris" or Alec 
Wilder’s, lovely "Sneden’s Land- 
ing" or Bud Reading's classic “The 
End of a Love Affair." The sort 
of gems, in other Words, that are 
done so superlatively . by Addison 
Bailey in the posh Drake, Room at 
the hour when dusk washes down 
over the city, or by Jimmy Daniels 
in the Left Bankish Bon Soil* at 
midnight or by Mabel Mercer at 
four in the morning in the loft 
called the Byline Room, all in Man- 
hattan. of course-^where else! 

We. the lovei*s of show and show- 
type tunes as well as of those who 
interpret them' affectionately, abe 
possess ed of a willful and persist- 
: ent nostalgia. All of us — and 


Opening . January 1 , 1034. at. the 
i Kdgewater -Beach Hotel, Chicago. 
I 'Then -to New York . . .Opening 
J February 1, 1.9 .>4,- at , Hotel Slatler. 

Under -Personal Management 

Statler Hotel, New York City, N. Y. 

Can Resume 

the hour when dusk waishes down i Toughening of the legit booking 
over the city, or by Jimmy Daniels situationi bo th in New York and 
uv.the Left Bankish Bon Soil* at ' . ... 

midnight or by Mabel Mercer at of town, is seen as a possible 

four in the morning in the loft result of last week's d'smissal of 
called the Byline Room, all in Man- the Government’s antitrust suit 

hattan. of course-r-where else! .against the Slniberts. Legit trade 
W e. the lovers of show and show- , ,. . . ° , 

type tunes as well as of those who doesn 1 ex P ect immediate develop- 
interpret them affectionately, abe merits in that direction, however, 
possessed of a willful and persist- . particularly in view of the uncer- 
ent nostalgia. All of us — and ' tain situation within the Shubert 
among us are such disparate per- -organization following Lee Shu- 
sonalities as Marcus Blechman, the bert’s death. (See separate story 
portrait photographer; Peter Arho. ^ on Lee Shubert’s will. 

■ Morton Gottlieb, the theatrical' pro- 
ducer; Al Simon of WQXR. Bob 
■Bach, the radio and: TV producer; 
Dorothy Kilgallen,. who remember? 
the lyrics to, of, all things, "The 
Scam Is on the Beam"; Bos 
.'.leaser, the newspaper publisher — 
are touched, and deeply so. by the 
same lingering magic, whether the 

•Continued oil page 56) 

Although there’s some differ- 
ence ^ opinion in managerial cir- 
cles, certain producers and mana- 
gers.. figure that- the Shubert or- 
ganization may take the court de- 
cision as a green light to continue 
and even expand tactics that, have 
aroused objection in the past. 
However, that may depend on who 

(Continued oil page 56) 

irsary Wednesday, January 6, 1934 


it 1953 goes into the annals as the year when third-dimension 
worked the salvation of the picture business, 1954 should be as 
potent via color TV in the lore of broadcasting. Paradoxically 
and running true to the pattern of all progress through the ages’ 
what at first looms like a bane frequently becomes the boon of 
an industry. This was true with black-and-white TV in rela- 
tion to the picture business when ^Hollywood finally met the 
challenge with a technological evolution all its own. Just which 
process will be the ultimately definitive realization— widescreen 
or any of the Scopes— is beside the point, for the moment any 
way. Fact is that the excitement attendant upon the develop- 
ment of new cinematic techniques created the desired end-re- 
sult: the public once again became film-minded. 

The show biz adage that there is nothing more permanent 
than change has certainly been dramatized by current tangents 
Through the electronic evolution, vast new horizons of vaster 
audience, appreciation for any and all of the seven Lively Arts are 
in the offing. ^ 

The picture business, unquestionably the greatest form of una$s 
entertainment this side of boy-meets-girl and certainly ' the 
cheapest, hence the most popular form of family entertainment 
Will see itself fortified by new values, and new plus divertisse- 
ments the like of which the. celluloid pioneers never envisioned, 
As with ballet and legit, Vaudeville and Concert, which already 
have been brought into the home via the image orthicon, theo- 
retically "for free," the comeback of "live" shows, in electronic' 
patterns, as a plus, value. for picture theatres, is inevitable. That 
may take the shape of an important sports event, a Broadway 
premiere, a Metropolitan Opera production, a super- vaudeo en- 
tertainment. It may be piped direct into the homes via toll- 
Vision; or into auditoriums as supplementary fare, lii some form 
of closed-circuit theatre. 

There is no. question but that year after year the magic of the 
electric impulse is making Fallen Arches, Ark., as privy to top 
entertainment as any deluxer on Broadway or Hollywood Blvd, 
More than ever "everybody has his own business— and show 

; With 3-D a reality in ’53, ancl 1954-C (color TV) inevitable in 
fruition this: year, there is no room for any pessimistic 4-F’s in 
the present scheme of show biz. It’s a far cry from a half-cen- 
tury ago when Tony Pastor put the "family” into family vaude- 
ville, and the picture business, with its vast skein of screens, 
networked the country— and then the world— with a new brand 
of mass entertainment. 

. As vaude and legit found new horizons in television, the ad- ‘ 
vent of the spectrum values enhanced that medium, just as a 
new technological process took Hollywood out of its doldrums. 
It was a challenge for the picture business but when, in Its nadir, 
a picture like “The Robe” (and a new technique) can. emerge 
: as. perhaps the ultimately top film grosser of all time, that, best 
tells the story of an industry which has the faculty of besting 
all hazards. Especially when these "threats” were, athirst, • re- 
garded as insurmountable. Abel. 



Marie Antoinette squandered | but wouldn’t spend a dime on a 
the wealth of France on herself, good gag-writer. She had a eood 

The By-Liners In This Issue 

Trade' "LirU Ht/rlstcrcd 
Published iVe-'rly by VARIETY INC 
Harold Enc-lis, President 
lo4 West 46th St Now York 3«. N V 

Hollywood 28' 

6311 Yueon Street 
Washington 4 

1292 Nation T Press Building 
Chicago 11. 

612 No ■ M.l'ohi can Ave. 

London WC2 

8 St Margin's PI. trafalgai Sq 

Annual 810 Foreign Sit 

Single Copies 25 C’eni<- 

ABEL V./MOEN Editor 

Vol. 193 

No. 5 






Obi Is 


Radio- m elevKiort 



(Published in Hollywood by 
. Daily Variety. Ltd.) 

$15 a Year $20 Forelgh 

John Abbott 


James R. Grainger .. 

. . . 49 

.Joev Adams 


Carl Haverlin ...... 

. . . . 228 

Mel Allen 


Peter Lind Ilayos .■■. 


Ned Armstrong 


Harry Ilershfield .. . 


Ellis Arnall . 


Burnet Hershey . . . . 

.... 275 

Art Arthur 


Morgan Hudgins . . . 


P at Ballard 


Edward L. Hyman . . 

.... 61 

Howard G. Barnes 


Alan Jackson 


Lucius Beebe 


Felix Jackson 

.... 101 

Jack Benny . ........ 


Coleman Jacoby . . . . 

.... 93 

? lac Benoff . ........ 


George Jcssel 

.... 88 

Bunjamin N. Berger 


Erie Johnston 

.... 25 

Maurice Bergman 


Milt Joscfsbcrg .■! . .\ 


Ted Bergman n . . ! 


Hal Kantcr 

.... 38 

Claude Binyon 


John Karol 


B-n Bloom 


Rcub Kaufman . . . 


N. J. Blumberg 


Cliarlcs O. Kennedy 


Malcolm Boyd 


Ralph T, Kettering 

.... 273 

Charles Brackett . . 


l.Ienry King 

. . . . 25 

Alan Bunce 


Robert E. Kinlner . . 


Kuethe Burr 

2 'i5 

Edwin Knopf 


Kav Ca.mpbell 


Arthur Kobcr . . . . 


J’ddie Cantor 


Samuel Kurlzman . , 

. i2 

Carroll Carroll . . .*. . . . , . 


Arthur B. Krim . . . 


Bennett Cerf . 


Lawrence Langner. . 

.... 3 

Cower Champion 


Joe Laurie Jr. 


Peg Connelly . . 


Jerome Lawrence . 

.... 88 

Bob Considinc 


Robert E. Lee ...... 


Pierre Crenessc ......... 


Sam Levenson 


Charles Dale .......... 


Arthur Levey 

. ... 31 

John Dalv . . . 


Al Lichtman 

.... 48 

Fddic Davis 


Max Licbman 

. . . . 89 

Ilal Davis . 


Robert L; Lippei t . . . 


Louis Derman 


Aim Lipseoit 

.... 89 

Nat Dorfnian 


. Edward D. Madden . . 

. . . . 93 

A !en Dueovny . . 


J. P. MeEvo.v ...... 

r... . 18 

Albert Duffy 


Magyi . McNeil is . . . . 

... . 94 

Dr, AMcn B. DuMont . . . 


Arthur L. Mayer . . . . 

. , . . 10 

Ken Eriglund ........ 


Noel Meadow 

.... 43 

Mon is L. Ernst 


Rich-ai'd Men land' ... 

.... 3 

S. H. Fabian .......... 


William Molyncux . . 

. . . . 103 

Me.i k Ferris- . . 


Abram F. Myers . . . . 

.... 12 

A.’ah M. Fishburn ...... 


Morris S. Novik . . . . 

.' . . 99 

Aaron Fishman ........ 


Mort Nusbaum . . . . 

. . , . 198 

George Frazier ......... 


Arch Obolcr 


Sm*. Henry French ...... 


Robert J. O’Donnell 

. 25, 31 

Hy Gardner 


William’ Ornstoin ... . 

.... 31 

.Tames J. Geller 12 

Robert Gessner , . 93 

William Goetz 8 

‘■’a! ban D. Golden 9 

Leonard H. GoldensOn . . 8 

Dr. Allred N’. Goldsmith . 92 

Lester Gottlieb 91 

Edmund Grainger ...... 5 

Loon Pearson 
H. I. Phillips. . . . 
Theodore Pratt . 
f .Bpnny Rabin . . 

• Jo Ranson . . 
Walter Rcado. Jr. 
Ronald Reagan . 
Harold Robbins 

Francis Robinson . . 
Arnie Rosen . . . ... 
Norman B. Rydge . 

Manie Sacks 

Sol Saks . . 

Robert W. Sarnoff . 
William Saroyan . . . 
Robert Saudek .... 

Al Schwartz ...... 

Sherwood Schwartz 
Maxwell Shane .... 

Arnold Shaw . ...... 

James Sheldon .... 

Max Shulman ..... 

George T ; Shupcrt . 

Abner Siiver 

Phil Silvers .... 
H. Allen Smith .... 

Joe Smith 

Pete Smith . ..... 

Bernard Sobol .... 

Spyros Skouras . . . 
Harry Sosnik .... 

Leonard Spinrad . . 
Alfred Starr ...... 

Kay Ashton-Stevens 
Albert Stillman . . . 
Robert Stolz ..... 

John Cameron Sway 
Dan Terrell 
Danny Thomas , . . .' 
Richard Thorpe . . . 
Henry Tobias ..... 

Terry Turner 

Ernest Turnbull . . . 
Solly Violinsky . . ; . 
Jerry Wald : . 

Hal B. Wallis- ...... 

Richard F. Walsh . 
Lou Walters ...... 

Carl Ward 

Jack L. Warner 

David Wayne ...... 

Sylvester L. Weaver 
Julian S. H. Weiner 
George Weltner . . . 
Riobert M. Weitman 
R. B. Wilby . . 
Charlie Williams . . 

Earl Wilsoh 

Frank Wisbar 

Mitchell Wolfson . . 
Herbert J. Yates . . 
Darryl F. Zanuck . . . 
■Maurice Zolotow . . 

Harry ilershfield 

hut wouldn’t spend a dime on a 
good gag-writer. She had a good 

head on her 

Harry ilershfield no bread. 

\ Shakespeare 

knew his politics when he had one 
of. his characters cry: "Invest me 
in my motley, give me leave to 
speak my mind." The jester speaks 
the truth. And none know it 
better than the smart politicians 
of today. As' did the Chinese, when 
they said: "One picture is worth 
100,000 words." And today’s can- 
didate knows that an apropos gag 
• which is but an illustration) will 
put his point over better than all 
the spellbinding of a whole cam- 

Abraham Lincoln, though - .not 
the first to employ that forihbla, 
was the most active in clinching 
an argument with an exemplifica- 
tion. I think it was some later 
President who started his stuff 
with, "A funny thing happened to 
me on my way to the White House’’ 
—though funnier things happened 
alter they got in there. 

Some, of our leading political 
figures have their personal press- 
agents, many call on leading 
comedians, as well as gag writers, 
to supply "boffo” wisecracks to 
alleviate a situation. The smart 
ones, however, know that the best 
nifty means nothing unless tied 
up to subject matter that makes 
headlines. Adlai Stevenson is 
presently the quoted boy. Harry 
Truman knows when to spring a 
punchline. Second to none, is an 
experienced youngster named Win*, 
ston Churchill. How many of tt> e 
space-getting "ad libs" are re- 
hearsed is a moot question. 

It is claimed that some have, 
arranged for world-$haking events 

(Continued on page 56) 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 




Exbib’s first Question, ‘Who’s in It? 

opmg on 



I think it was Rabelais who said 
"It is wise to get knowledge from, 
every source — from a sot, a pot-, a 
fool. la winter-mitten, or an old 
10 slipper.” 

I don’t know 
into just which 
of those cate- 
gories a pro- 
du cer fits. 
HoweVer, I 
have always 
felt that 
Hollywood has 
tr e a t e d too 
lightly the de- 
velopment of 
new talent- 
in all creative 

Eddie Grainger 

fields as well as in the acting 
ranks. I believe the industry is suf- 
fering some of the effects of this 
oversight , right now. 

In the development of “new 
faces,’’ however, the exhibitor 
must share some of the responsi- 
bility. with the producer. Every 
film salesman knows that an ex- 
hibitor’s first. question is “Who’s 
in it?" The picture might have half 
a dozen of the most promising new 
players in Hollywood heading the 
cast, but an exhibitor favors a film 
with one long established star 
name (perhaps too long estab- 
lished!, even if the no-star film is 
much the better of the two. 

Showmen are just as capable as 
producers in spotting new talent 
and potential stars. So when the 
producer gambles time and money 
on the development of new per- 
sonalities, it should not be asking 
too much to. expect the exhibitor 
to back him up With intelligent 
sonalities in his local situation. 

There are considerably less than 
a dozen stars big enough to carry 
a picture to boxoffice success to- 
day, It stands to reason that even 
one of these stars can’t be in every 
picture. The star system will al- 
ways be with us, but today the 
public is demanding more than just 
a star name. It has tired of many 
promotion of interesting new per- 
of the old favorites and it has be- 
come highly critical. A good star 
(Continued on page 48) 

Col to Finance, Release 
3 More Warwick Pix 

. Hollywood. 

Warwick Productions which re- 
cently completed three Alan Ladd 
starrers abroad, closed a deal to 
make three more features to be 
financed and released by Columbia. 

Starter will be “Cockleshell 
Heroes,” based on a yarn by 
George Kent and slated for film- 
ing in England rand France. Next 
will be “Prize of Gold,” a novel 
by Max Catto, With lensing in Eng- 
land and Germany. Third will be 
announced later. 


( President , United Artists Corp.) 

There is, of course, a complex 
of factors underlying United Art- 
ists' ability to grow, to alter, and 
to prosper through 35 years, both 
lush and lean. One key to the 
company’s hardihood certainly lies 
in the special virtues of indepen- 
dent films — benefits which extend 
to producer, distributor, exhibitor 
and public alike. 

The unique advantages of inde- 
pendent production are evident in 
tne first creative phase of a pic- 
uie, The producer is given a free 
* n ,n - nis choice of material. He 
s never saddled with a prefabri- 
t, tt led ?™ ject that may or may not 
an / , 1 up his alley. He selects 
and develops a stopy with which 
1 Htirnalcly concerned and 
handle 0 * S idealIy equipped to 

the independent producer 

it u wt scn P ro i ec t, he mounts 
10Ut c O ns traint or hindrance. 
no studio taboos or 

hibi f tin ( ir nC€S n t ‘ 0 . be . jo^Sled, no in- 
of . n ^. confllct with the judgment 

0 stuj hea ^. The pict « re .. 

IntramVe'lcd reat ‘ Ve capacities are 

mo *' Ve Is naturally as 
to'^hp- d «3 t tbe ^dependent as 

atinc h dl °4u Producer ' But °P cr ' 
makbm hln the H me necessity of 
denonl 3 , pirture^the in- 

cxDifir^ 0 ? ls f ree *° inipr^ivise and 
studia ;„?- n , th « absence of a fixed 
ideas be ca h develop new 

able iri^ n . d L n t. be absence of suit- 

. d -s, he is not goaded into,*.. « 
continued on page 48) year. 

To U. S. Taste 


Combination; of audience re- 
sistance, television and lack of out- 
standing productions has made 
1953 an . unexciting year for the 
indies handling foreign language 
films! A few of them, like “Seven 
Deadly Sins,” “Rome 11 O’clock” 
and “Forbidden Games,” did weil 
in spots but certainly didn’t puli 
this, branch of the industry out of 
the rut it’s been in for the past 
couple of years. 

Indie distribs are taking this dull 
performance in their stride. At 
the same time, they’re more than 
intrigued by the potential expan- 
sion of their market via dubbing 
which has provided a distinct boost 
for a couple of Italo imports such 
as. Italian Films Export’s “Anna.” 

What’s worrying them more 
than the obvious difficulty of get- 
ting their “intellectual” audience 
backbone to come back to the thea- 
tres is the lack of suitable product 
emanating from the European 
studios which are going full-blast. 
Italo producers, they maintain, 
now have, their eye on the Ameri- 
can mass market and what they 
conceive to be its tastes. This is 
resulting in a rash of “big” pic- 
tures that also lend themselves to 
dubbing and in a lesser number 
of the more sensitive films which 
were a postwar specialty from 
Rome and which delighted artie 

“They're now trying to emulate 
the American ways of exploiting 
their imports,” i.e. sex ’em up, says 
Noel Meadow, vet importer-distrib. 
He called ’53 the worst year for 
foreign films in the U.S. since the 
late forties and said television was 
part of the reason for the slump. 

Arthur Davis, who specializes in 
French films and whose “Seven 
Deadly Sins” has been a limited 
hit (it’s on the Legion of Decency's 
Condemned list) complained of the 
(Continued on page 48) 

Hayes-Healy’s CBS Pad, 
He to 

Peter Lind Hayes & Mary Healy 
have been signed by CBS for a 
longterm radio-TV pact understood 
to be minimum five years and call- 
ing also for the individual serv- 
ices of Hayes. Male part of the Mr. 
and Mrs. comedy-song team will 
be the official pinchhitlcr for Ar- 
thur Godfrey, and thus he’ll be tak- 
ing the sub-throne spot vacated 
When Robert. Q. Lewis got himself 
a flock of shows on the web and ex- 
tricated himself from the subbing 
chore. Hayes already put this part 
of his pact in motion by stepping 
in . for Godfrey at the tailend of 
last week when the headman and 
his troupe, were appearing at 
Thule Air Base in Greenland. 

Hayes & Healy will be formatted 
in a nighttime stanza early this 

’ 52 : 11253 , 510.000 


The big pix of 1953 Came really 
kingsize; it was a year of boxoffice 

Blue chip productions — those 
grossing $1,000,000 or over in U. S. 
and Canadian rentals — numbered 
135 and they’re ringing up a com- 
bined estimated total of $311,950,- 
000. In 1952, 119 films in the $1,- 
000,000-and-above category were 
listed at $253,510,000. 

Money in the till gain for ’53; 

Major studios pounced on big- 
ness in . production as though, it 
Were just invented. At 20th-Fox, 
it was, and with unprecedented 
payoff. First in 20th's Cinema- 
Scope process, “The Robe,” fits 
head and shoulders above any new 
picture entry down through the 
years in terms of income. 

“Robe” is the colossal smash of 
1953, with a potential gross of 
$20,-30,000,000. There’s no “look 
to the past to predict the future” 
basis upon which a more precise 
estimate can be made. .That the 
film will reach $20,000,000 appears 
a certainty. Some execs at 20th 
(and a few at rival distribution or-r 
ganizations) seem confident that 
the pic will reach $30,000,000. 

$12,500,000 for Col’s 

Flattie, ‘Eternity’ 

Sharply contrasted in produc- 
tion technique is No. 2 in the pa- 
rade of clicks: Columbia’s “From 
Here to Eternity.” Without any 
anamorphic squeezeplay in the 
lensing, and framed conventionally 
(Continued on page 66) 




As long as there is a picture in- 
dustry, “stars” will be important. 
Unfortunately, stars no longer au- 
matically insure the success of a 

picture; but 
in combination 
with a proper 
story and pro- 
duction, a star 
or group Of 
stars greatly 
enhanced the 
earning poten- 

On the oth- 
er hand, pic- 
tures with an 
offbeat and 
different qual- 
ity can frequently do very well, 
even without tfic impetus of a star 
name. A case in point is our 
“Cease Fire,” produced in Korea 
in 3-D without a single recogniz- 
able face (as a milter of fact, every 
player in the picture was an actual 

However, exhibitors do not do 
enough to promote “new faces,” 
Clamor as they do for new fresh tal- 

(CorUinued on page 48) 

Hal Wallis 

Peck-Parrish Indie Buys 
Lea’s ‘Wonderful Country’ 


New indie- film producing com- 
pany. has been organized by. Greg - 
ory Peck and Robert Parrish to 
start operations in Mexico early in 
1955. First production will be 
“The Wonderful Country,” based 
on a novel by Tom Lea. 

Before he goes into production, 
Peck has commitments to star in 
“The Purple Plain” in Ceylon, 
“Moby Dick” in England and the 
first of a fiverpicture deal with 
20th-Fox in.. Hollywood. 


This was an infinitely more har- 
rowing year for the radio and tele- 
vision cacoepists. 

Largely because performers 
opened their big mouths and struck 
out metathetically, a leering pub- 
lic most impure in spirit and mind, 
gave them a jumbo horse laugh. 

This year’s tongue slips, boners, 
booboos, fluffs and snafus were 
rated bigger and better, saltier and 
saucier. Up and down AM and TV 
trails many a pear-shaped vowel- 
performer tripped on his scrotal 
tongue and quickly landed on the 
fluff hit parade.. A hole in the 
head, in some instances, would 
have been the lesser of two evils. 

Fluffers do not subscribe to the 
Latin dictum, Vox audita perit lit- 
tera scripta mane.t (the spoken 
word dies, the written letter re- 
mains). For them this old Latin 
saw has a hollow ring. 

The unlucky ones who transpose 
letters or syllables or who mala- 
prop their way on the airlanes 
know durn well that the spoken 
word is never forgotten and they 
know that on the morrow their col- 
leagues also can be the victims of 
this tongue-tripping torture. No 
one, it seems, is immune. It hap- 
pens to the star in Radio City, New 
York, and it happens to the lowly 
announcer in Split Infinitive, Iowa. 

In communications history 1953 
will go down as the year in which 
a goodly number of earthy, four- 
letter, Anglo-Saxon words bounced 
off the tongues of those facing 
live, and sometimes supposedly 
dead, . microphones. The grand 
prize for the fall and winter semes- 
ter must naturally go to the alto- 
gether uninhibited radio announcer 
on the Washington station who, 
during one of Fulton Lewis Jr.’s 
broadcasts over the Mutual Broad- 
casting System, rudely uttered a 
naughty exclamation that might 
(Continued on page 66) 


Through the years the motion 
picture industry has been distinc- 
tive among American businesses 
for its ability to recognize and 
meet constant- 
ly c hang i ng 
standards in 
the public de- 
mand for its 

In my own 
opinion, . the 
record of the 
motion picture 
industry has. 
proven over 
and o v e r 
again its 
capacity for 

Spyros Skouras 

sensing and responding to higher 
requirements of popular taste id 
both artistic and technical ways. 

Each time there has been a 
major shift in public taste, such as 
when sound was introduced, the 
adjustments necessary have been 
in some degree painful but our in- 
dustry has been able to take a 
long-range view and accept the im- 
mediate burdens imposed for the 
sake of the general welfare and 

In the period just ahead, I be- 
lieve that not only the production 
branch of our industry but the ex- 
hibition branch will face a chal- 
lenge such as they have neyer had 
before in providing screen enter- 
tainment that will have unques- 
tioned merit and will be equal to 
the task of overcoming all com- 
petition for the entertainment dol- 
lar, especially that of television in 
the home. 

While it is understandable that 
some theatre owners are hesitant 
about making new investments in 
equipment just as some producers 
have wavered about entering new 
types of production, I cannot em- 
(Continued on page 65) 

U S. Films Pace 


U. S. films remain top favorites 
at cinemas here, First place at the 
Odeon, downtown ace house here, 
was gained by “Call Me Madam” 
(20th) with top gross. Next in popu- 
larity with the patroiis were 
“Snows of . Kilimanjaro” (20th) 
and “The Red Beret”. 

“House of Wax” (WB) held lead- 
ing position at the Associated Brit- 
ish Cinemas key house, the Regal, 
followed by “April in Paris” 
(M-O) and "Julius Caesar” (M-G), 
“Road to Bali” (Par) gained sec- 
ond- spot at the C.aumont. beaten 
by the Coronation pic “A Queen 
Is Crowned.” “Shane” (Par) was 

Other favorites hoxoffico-wise at 
key theatres were “Military Police- 
man” (Par), “War of Worlds” 
(Par), “Because You’re Mine” (MG) 
and “Quo Vadis” (M-G>... 

Award to Elmer Davis 

U. S. Supreme Court Justice 
j William O. Douglas, winner of the 
award last year, did the honors for 
the Authors Guild last week, in 
handing the Lauterbach Award for 
1953 to Elmer Davis. This is named 
! for late Richard Lauterbach, war 
' correspondent who died of polio 
1 at 30. • 

I Said Douglas of Davis; “He 
risked the hysteria and passion of 
the day by speaking on the un- 
popular side of important, issues” 
... in a dark day of intolerance 
he spoke, for the bright conscience 
’ of America.” 

Subscription Order Worm 

Enclosed find check for $ 

Onp Y«nr 

Please send VARIETY for Two Years 



(Pleaao Print Name) 


City . . . . Zone .... State ....... 

Regular Subscription Rates 
One Year— '$10.00 Two Years— $18.00 

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1 54 West 44th Street N.w York 34. N. Y. 



(Or Blankety-Blank the Critics) 


Bill Saroyan 

The way writers get their work done has always been 

Take mvsclf, for instance, . . ■ 

“There is a fine story in the way a writer g s 

Thci? .1* “ - work done," 1 say to the wall when 

I get up in the morning. . 

This seems a reasonable thought. 
Writers are such interesting tel- 
lows, humorous and yet serious- 
minded, and often Interested in hu- 

m Also’ they travel farther than other 
professional men, excepting ^profes- 
sional men who travel to Arabia. 

Women, make a fuss over them, and 
generally speaking they are a jaunty 

l0t \Vhy shouldn’t a story about the 
way one of them gets his work done 
be just- the thing for the Woman’s Home Companion. . 

Unfortunately, however, this carlymoi ^ 
been going on by itself, and I have been a little suspicious 

* f No. What I want ; is not a story about, a writer but 
a story about somebody else, a man of 88, for instance. 

“Look over there,” he says. “There’s that woman again, 
■weeping off her porch. She doesn’t know how to hold a 
broom. She might have been hitched to a cart m the old 
davs. Still, 20 or 30 years ago 1 might have stopped 
at her gate- and tipped my hat, hoping spmeUinig might 

But the old man won’t do, either, for I cant think of a 
good name for him. or whether he traveled. 

I wonder, then, if the, story oughtn’t to be about a new 
life instead of an old one. An infant, three hours old, lor 

instance* • 4 . 

What I want to say about him is that he is quite sound 

and- will live 51 years, 

How do 1 know? 

I don’t, but a writer is permitted to say such things. 
It’s something nobody cbmplains about. If I were to say 
he is to live four days nobody would complain about that, 
either, but it happens that 1 feel he ought to. live 51 years. 
That is no longer a great number of years for any man to 
live, so I do not feel I am exaggerating things. 

And, of course, the. infant will receive the usual honors 
of a faithful employee: that is to say, a letter from the 
assistant manager Which says in, an apparently sincere 
'.manner that he, the assistant manager, would not have 
been a real executive had he not noticed over the 30 
rears of Arthur’s employment that apart from the fact that 
Arthur had never behaved mischieviousjy insofar as com- 
pany interests were concerned, Arthur had also worked 
hard and cheerfully. 


On Another Tuck 

I thought Arthur would be a rather impressive name for 
the infant. 

But the thing I really wanted to do was to see if I 
could convey a. sense of life through the infant, for almost 
anvbody cah say something about a delivery clerk. 

in short. I thought that if I could make the aliveness 
of a new man real, the critics Would have to think twice 
about me, 

That is the plague of a writer’s life. 

Critics will not think twice about him. They will think 
once and hurry back to the writers of a hundred years 
ago who knew what they were doing. . They will say things 
that do not do a writer’s dignity very much good. If they 
would think twice about the man, they would know that he 
is not such a bad sort, after all. 

But just thinking about the critics annoys nie ; and 
Instead of trying to make Arthur immortal, I let him 
perish. ■ 

In the meantime, my thinking has moved quickly, and 
I have imagined what I would write about Arthur, and 
how hopeful I would be that it would make the critics 
think twice, and then, no. they have not done so, they 
have thought only once again, and their opinion is that 
Arthur is boring. 

One of them 'a well-bred man with a college back- 
ground. both as a student and as a teacher of English) 
quotes from the book without comment, and somehow this 
pains me more than anything else. 

The quotation falls fiat, as the critic meant it to, and 
the words I thought were so meaningful when I wrote 
them seem preposterous and silly. What the devil did I 

I must confess the critics scare me. and haunt my sleep. 

I would do better, I know, if they would only think 
tw ice. 

If they would think three . times I might write something 
astonishing. (But the mere .thought of the critic who 
has always written so coldly about my writing has finished 
Arthur for me, and for the world.) 

Fortunately, there are other people to think about, and I 
find that I am thinking about a man who is wretchedly 
unhappy because, although he is gainfully employed and 
has appropriate clothing for all ordinary occasions, feel 
that he should have stuck to his boyhood ambition to be. a 

He had had other ambitions as well, but Urey had been 
wild, and he had had intelligence enough, -after he wgs 
30. to recognize them as such. 

It was quite unlikely; he began to feel at 30, for in- 
stance, that he would, ever lead the men who would con- 
quer South Africa, for if the truth were known- he did 
not- know where the men were and .was not. sure that he 
might not meet with some sort of accidental embarrass- 
ment at the time of the leading. 

For instance, a man lias worked hard for 39 years to 
achieve something extraordinary and impressive, like the 
conquering of South Africa, and finally he is leading his 
men to the 'moment of glory, charging ahead. 

Behind a very small bush, however, lurks an African. 

The bush is so low as to seem incapable of concealing 
a human being, but alas the lurking man is small. 

And he is concealed, look at it any way you like. 

He is watching Joseph with small ugly eyes,, for he loves 
South Africa, and altogether on his own, not even as- 
signed to the awful- task by the proper authorities, he has 
taken his place behind the small bush; and having no 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 

other weapon with which to defend South. Africa, he holds 
in his hand a stone weighing one pound, two ounces. 

What he means to do is to smite Joseph (Swigley) on 
the head. 

Joseph strides fearlessly forward, for he disdains horses. 
(Actually he is afraid of them and has developed a whole 
philosophy based on the superiority of conquest on foot.) 

The fanatical South African is ready for him, and at 
the proper moment leaps up and casts the stone. 

Fortunately, it misses the mark, does not catch Joseph 
in the mouth, but pushes Into the pit of his stomach. 

Now, how was Joseph to have known there would be a 
South African fanatic behind that bush? 

It was an accident, pure and simple. But the damage 
is done. The blow has hurt Joseph, and he has sat down 
in front of his troops and is crying. 

Well, there it is. A man never knows what sort of 
accident is likely to humiliate him if he thinks of being a 
conqueror, and so Joseph, at 30, gave it up. 

But he did feel that he should have gone ahead w'ith his 
ambition to be a pianist, and so he is unhappy, and having 
the appropriate clothing doesn’t comfort him. 

Well, there was certainly a little something to this 
idea, too, but I couldn’t quite take to it, for to be perfectly 
honest I didn’t like the man— him and his thoughts of 
playing the piano both. 

AH of this thinking, this preparing to get to work, has 
taken the time it lakes to smoke a cigaret, and yet I have 
already begun to feel that the day is lost, for. I cannot 
decide who io tell my story about . 

I might have written something quite good about the 
88-year-old man, and come to think of it why couldn’t I 
have called him Stephen Alcott? That’s quite a good 

I might also have hit upon some clever thoughts about 
how he had managed to stay alive SO long. There might 
even have been a word or two about patriotism, for he 
wore a small flag in his lapel. A Belgian flag to be sure, 
although he was not a Belgian, but he always remarked to 
those w'iio noticed that the flag was a Belgian one, “Don’t 
let the flag fool you, sonny, I love this country.” 

If I had had any luck at all I might even have got in 
a few good licks about life insurance, pointing out that in 
most eases it is not necessary, or on the other hand that 
it is generally a blessing, for had. not Mr. Alcott taken 
out the proper pblicy when he was 20 he could not in his 
old age receive in the mail on the first of each, and every 
month iiis cheek for $55, rain or shine. 

In short, had I not been so eager to make a better 
impression on the critics and gone ahead with the story 
of the old man, I might have done all right. 

And if the worst came to the worst I might have w ritten 
a good story about Arthur the infant, too. • 

In other words, the critics. What good are they? Don’t 
they spoil things? Don’t they stop a man in his tracks? 
Don’t they scare him half to death with their clever way 
of putting things to make a fellow feel small?" 

And yet where is the critic who, in a showdown, could 
give us the pleasure the writing fellows give us? Where 
is the critic who could get down off his high-horse and tell 
a little story that could make an unhappy man smile and 
say to himself, "Well, now', living’s not so bad, after all. 
There’s these writing fellows to cheer a man up once in 
a while.’’ 

How about that? 

.Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Westward -Or Is It Eastward-Ho? 

===By KEN ENGLUND====~ to 

Let’s begin with* -s^ory you might have heard that is 
probably apocryphal: two writers— one driving from New 
York to Holly wood, the other bound in the opposite direc- 
tion— rpass each other in the desert and both sinuilta- 

neously yell: “Go back!” 

Which gets me neatly into the 
theme of this monograph— namely the 
problems writers face in straddling 
both coasts^-everi people like Bob 
Sherwood, no matter how long hj s 

Take any show business nomad, any 
writing Arab who must fold up his 
tent and move from one market place 
to the other to sell his wares— (Men! 
Send for my free booklet entitled 
“How I, a writing weakling, learned 
„ . to coin colorful metaphors overnight 

Ken Engiuna an d i ncr£?ase( j my vvord • power ten- 
fold.” Mailed to you in a plain wrapper) . . . take me lor 
example. Because I’m the handiest— Right now I am the 
sole support of two warehouses— Bekins Storage in Los 
Angeles and Hollanders in New York. I have visitation 
rights to some 40 packing cases On both coasts, bulging 
with duplicate complete sets of Zane Grey, four copies 
of ”Why Not Try God?” by Mary Pickford lying Unused 
in Bekins, and two identical mint copies here in Holland- 
ers, with equal and exasperating duplication all down the 
line, Edith Sitwell records and Woolworth China accumu- 
lating at a frightening rate each time I shuttle across the 
country , and set up a temporary hot plate kind of house- 
keeping. . 

And so the tides of fortune have filled my crates to 
overflowing with identical flotsam and jetsam. On that 
great eome-and-get-it day, I will be able to furnish a 28- 
loom house with coffeepots alone— six Silexes to a room. 

But this is the least of a wandering minstrel’s problem. 
The hearth and fireside can be dismantled and packed 
away, not so the family. Just when The Little Woman 
is making a wonderful adjustment, with the help of a 
Westwood phyehiatrist, to the rules of conduct in her 
Hollywood milieu - — women at one side of the room, men 
at the other at parties, purple slacks with mink jacket 
at the Farmer’s Market — -she is cruelly uprooted and 
tossed into a New York cocktail party where the men talk 
to the women, and finds herself having lunch with females 
who wear hats, skirts, stockings and leather shoes. She 
to her mortification the only one with straw wedgies. 
Naturally, the blows to the ego lay her low— this time on 
the couch of a Park Avenue Freud. 

Then There Are the Kids 

A Thorn By Any Other Name 

, _ W By ARTHUR (OOPS!) KOBER ===== 

It isn’t exactly a gripe, and I wouldn’t be too "disturbed 
about what I’m going to say, if I were you. I mean, it’s 
something that bothers me from time to time. I mean, 
I don’t lose any sleep over it, see, and I can think of many 
other things if I. would just set my mind to thinking of 
many other things. That’s my trouble, though. My mind 
insists on clinging to this one thought. Well, I might as 
well stop acting like someone writing at space rates and 
come directly to the point, which is this: who the hell 
is the guy in Hollywood (I’m sure he works for Universal 
Pictures since that studio is the chief offender) who is 
naming our movie heroes these days, and what in heaven's 
name is the reason for his intense preoccupation with 

Now in' my time our movie heroes had simple first 
names. There was a pleasant, monosyllabic name like 
John — Barrymore and Gilbert; a name like Richard — 
Barthejmess and Dix; like William — Farnum and S. Hart; 
Tim — Moore and Mix. Occasionally we’d have a film star 
with an exotic . first handle — Rudolph, Adolphe, Ramon — 
but these were appclations which went hand-in-hand with 
the well-upholstered costumes and uniforms they wore. 
(A name, incidentally, which seemed most felicitous for 
the evil roles, he played was that of Gustave von Seyffer- 
titz, my favorite screen villain.) 

The tendency toward action in given names was first 
detected by me in the early ’30s when I was a writer in 
Hollywood (and you Were, a Christian slave!) I recall, 
when “The Thin Man’’ was first produced, that the execu- 
tive in charge of the picture was Hunt Stromberg, a name 
that fairly screamed for an exclamation point, a monicker 
that would most certainly have increased the circulation of 
any tabloid printing it across its front page! This film, 
by the way, was based upon a book written by a writer 
whose first name, properly shortened, sounds like a ter- 
ribly tempered preacher uttering, a mild expletive: “Dash 

Today, however, there is action, the moment the movie 
hero’s name is flashed upon the. screen. Who, among the 
sedentary customers in a picture house, isn’t tempted to 
get on his mark, get ready, and fairly fly out of the the- 
atre at the sight of the name, Race Gentry? And -who 
among us is so hard-hearted as to resist the temptation to 
reach out, and chant a soft lullaby to Rock Hudson? (Rock 
Hudson, a chip off old Boulder Hudson!) 

Oh, the mystique in the name of Touch Connors. How 
often Tve wanted to seek him out and to comply with the 
request his name makes by touching Mr. Connors with the 
baseball bat which, in my fantasy* I have firmly gripped 
in my hands! 

I, my friends, am a timid soul, queasy at the simple 
act of opening a blister. And yet, I am courage itself 

But it is the children who really suffer. The Ford con- 
vertible with the twin pipes must be sold along with 
the entire wardrobe of T-shirts and corduroys, all traded 
for a baffling world of subways, shirts and neckties. And 
the straight-A student at Hollywood High winds up one 
cruel morning to find a demoralizing series of C’s on the 
Eastern report card. 

Is all this suffering necessary? At a recent writers’ 
seminar organized to look into the problem, it was agreed 
that it was not. AH heartily endorsed a suggestion for a 
practical workable plan that would eliminate the uproot- 
ing of wives and kids if it works a hardship. The plan, 
in principal, is to be a simple matter of temporarily trad- 
ing roofs, wives and children — the Eastern playwright 
bound for a short stint at Paramount, moving neatly and 
without fuss into the Bel Air nest of the film writer 
bound for Eastern TV, who would even-Steven settle in the 
apartment, and family circle of his opposite number. The 
trading post to be the Author’s League Journal and the 
Personal Column. 

The ads would perhaps read : 

RARILY FOR N. Y. TV, Will swap 6-acre estate, 

“ Snug Haven,” complete with championship size pool 
and young, lovely wife. She is my third and must 
really be seen to be appreciated, measuring 36-22-36. 
Good cook, too. Quiet children. Girl (6) helpful, 

. having been trained to use electric pencil sharpener. 
Boy (9) will tuash Cadillac on Saturday for weekly 
$12 allowance — answer to Dusty and Rory. What 
am I offered? — East 60s or Park Avenue preferred. 
Like Eastern temporary wife to be good mixer but 
plain type who will encourage me in my work, or 

SACRIFICE: The heartbreaking kind. Forced to , 
move West due to untimely, sale of novel, “Burning 
Lips and. Napoleon Brandy,’’ to MGM, with screen- v 
play assignment making, it necessary for me to give 
up but try to realize something of the investment I 
have made in promising . young dancer in “Kismet.” 
Already in for $1,823.67 in preliminary entertainment 
at 21, Sardi’s, the Copa, including gifts. Just try to 
improve on this one, a real- beauty and like new — - 
needs home with someone who appreciates finer 
pieces.. I’d rather keep myself and move her West 
than let someone have her who wouldn’t be good, to 
iicr. Who has Culver City starlet for quick trade? 
And later . turnover. 

Let me hear what my readers think. If you only know 
how much your letters mean to me. 

In summing lip, which I suppose I must .do-^aelually 
I'd rather -just lie down now because I have a slight head-, 
ache— but in looking the problem square in the face. I’d 
say the old advice still holds true, only now it works both 
ways— and that is —‘"Don’t take anyone to either coast 
you can't put on the Chief.” 

about yielding to the appeal implicit in the name of Lance 
Fuller, something I would most gladly do. preferably with 
a well-honed spear! And one other ^tiling: if I had the 
lungs of a lion, what fun it would be for me to roar into 
Rory Calhoun’s ears! Oh, that delicious and wonderful 
sound of . eardrums bursting in air! 

As a final note, I intend to give up my., London living 
quarters, located in Kidding-on-the-Square, and perch my 
house right on top of Universal’s new leading man, Craig 
Hill! (I don’t think I’ll bother repairing the plumbing.) 

As I said before, this, isn’t exactly a gripe. I call it 
more of a question: who the heck is the guy in Hollywood 
who is naming these new movie heroes? Chuck Cupp- 

fednesdsT* January 6, 1954 



Exhibitor Consensus Is 

Unmistakable Cross-Section of Theatre Owners’ Thinking 
And ‘Quality’ Should Always Be The Keynote, But 

And It’s Economic Suicide For the 

40 - 

Is That Technological Progress Is All Right, 
Going-T o-The-Movies Is A Mass Habit 
To Curb That Habit 

To Exhib Showmanship 


(Pres. North Central Allied) 


I wish to take this means of tak- 
ing slock of our business. The mo- 
tion picture business started some 
50 years ago at the very,, very bot- 
tom with the nickelodeon. A short 
while later stores were being con- 
verted into theatres. Still later 
natural evolution brought the mo- 
tion picture theatre palaces into be- 
ing. At the beginning the ex- 
hibitor was ashamed to mention 
that he was a theatreowner, but— 
he later became very proud of the 
business, and it was accepted as a 
dignified and very important in- 
dustry. The public has come to 
regard exhibitors and people asso- 
ciated with the motion picture busi- 
ness as a very fine outstanding, 
respected group of people — and 
much envied! 

All of this has come about be- 
cause theatres made money and 
the reason they made money dur- 
ing this entire period Was an in- 
centive sales policy under which 
the exhibitors purchased pictures 
at a flat price. That made it pos- 
sible to put showmanship behind 
the pictures with resulting bulging 
coffers. At the time When the ex- 
hibitors were making money, every- 
body connected with the industry 
was very prosperous. 

The drop-off in theatre receipts 
has not been entirely due to tele- 
vision. It was due to some genius 
in the industry getting the idea of 
selling pictures on percentage. It 
began in the late ’30s. When the 
distributors’:- representatives began 
insisting on selling pictures on per- 
centage, or on a guarantee against 
.percentage, the salesman and his 
manager were possibly not aware 
of the premeditated plan which 
some of these “geniuses” in New 
York had devised. The plan was 
for the sales force to sell pictures 
with a guarantee against percent- 
age. The exhibitor was advised 
that New York, insisted on the 
guarantee — that the guarantee 
was all they wanted and “nobody 
is going to check anyhow.’’ 

Bui in a few years the distribu- 
tors hired a Sargoy & Stein agency 
to check the exhibitors’ records 
and collect the difference, and then 
some The exhibitors did not learn 
Qt what the distributors were up 
tlve eail Y ’40s. When the 

ruil* i 01 , s ^ w *se, they inime- 
uiateiy damped down on advertis- 
ng top motion. pictures. That was 
i e beginning of the downfall of 

ihf>n ,llslncss ' ^ ie theatre business 
then wont along pretty well for sev- 

wn- j IS l,ierea fter due to the 

When liL/'i 1 u ? u j ual Prosperity. 
uJf, 11 levcIed off, the pinch 

Placed and w bole blame was 
placed, on television. While TV 

the 3 iivl 1 ,)0, . ,tor \ television is not 
.must 1 S bu , gab00 ’ The blame 
l 0sn i . p ! aced °n the present phi- 
*lre 1 llii.- 01 selI . lng Pictures to the- 
The s .« !!h w^hout an incentive, 
that the n dl f tr ibutors are. aware 
to s pe n d ^ b c a t res a re not anxious 
to do advertising money 

where business' ojn pictures 

tor 40 sly' m cA t J ?ay the-distribu- 
lishinc 01 60/p ’ thereby estab- 
Pictmcs n °J yardstick -for future 
that inanv ?J e , distributors know 
centw ‘ ,^ lea tres showing a per- 
Se 1 Picture.. advertise a. flat . 

opv. Manvel p f icture on the can- 
cJnon * ! i he S turn off their 
plavin’cr a gb ? s at 9 o’clock When 

and subu d^n en fl age . picture * Small 
•iblv tbeatres can’t pos- 

with the for stores 

^ration Thk ent V blgh cost of op * 

ating a rr Jl 1S ‘ sales polic Y is ere- 
business aT"? [ Paralysis in this 
‘ AU the romance and 

smart go-getting showmanship, so 
vital in this business, was knocked 
out by some of those overly smart 

i A Mass, Not A. Cl ass Business | 

The motion, picture business is 
still a great business and is mass 
entertainment. The present sales 
policy is diverting the business into 
class entertainment which will ul- 
timately be the destruction of our 
business. Theatre-going is a habit, 
and the way to keep the public in 
the habit is to show every big pic- 
ture in every theatre in the land 
and for the exhibitors to shout 
from the housetops.. Under , the 
present sales policy, some of the 
top pictures do not show in thou- 
sands of theatres. In many com- 
munities W'here the pictures do 
show, they are not properly adver- 
tised, due to the straightjacket in 
which the exhibitor is placed. Pic- 
tures such as “The Greatest Show' 
on Earth” should show in every 
community and in every suburban 
theatre with the greatest of adver- 
tising campaigns, not only for the 
good of that picture but also to 
keep the people in the motion pic- 
ture habit: The present “must” 
50% sales policy has stopped thou- 
sands of theatres from showing 
that picture and similar attractions. 
Distributor leaders must re-ex- 
amine this business, . instead of 
looking for miracles and they must 
get back to the original philoso- 
phy which made this business 
great, and give the exhibitor an 

Boxoffice receipts should be 
climbing due to the better pictures 
which are being produced, pros- 
perous times, and the population 
increase. If every good picture 
W'as shown in every theatre in the 
country, with an incentive plan, 
our business would skyrocket- 
television or no television. 

Several thousand theatres have 
gone on the rocks-in the last few 
years. Several thousand more are 
on the verge. Some smalltown the- 
atres are being taken over by the 
community, as they do not wish to 
see their Main Street darkened. If 
something is not done very quickly 
to keep the. exhibitors in business, 
there will be many more theatres 
taken over by the communities. 
These communities will not stand 
for being gouged and they will 
appeal to the state and Federal 
government for help. This will 
definitely lead to making the mo- 
tion-picture industry subject to 
public utility regulation. The peo- 
ple in the smailtovvns resent not 
being able' to get all the top mo- 
tion pictures. The philosophy that 
some of the distributors have that 
“if the exhibitors cannot pay the 
price, they don’t have to buy the 
picture" must be altered. Advanced 
admission prices ill suburban the- 
atres and small towns, with a rare 
exception, tend to take picture en- 
tertainment away from the masses, 
divert it to the classes and destroy 
the whole fabric Of our business. 

It is not too late for the distrib- 
utors to take stock of themselves 
and of the business and see to it 
that the small towns and suburban 
theatres get ail the top pictures on 
a decent price policy with an in- 
centive. Unless this is done very 
quickly, ahd if there would be any 
slide in general business, I am 
sorry to say that we will see the- 
atres dying like flies, 

Let’s go back to the original 
policy of selling pictures W'hich j 
made this business a prosperous 
and dignified business in which the 
exhibitor had a stake and an in- 

Biz— Don’t Kill It Off! 


( President, Theatre Owners 
of Oklahoma) 

Oklahoma City. 

Once again our great industry 
is floundering, lashing its jjoridcr- 
ous body against the walls of inde- 
cision; New techniques,, their value 
still too new to be determined, 
with their prohibitive costs and 
varied claims to public appeal — 
combined w r ith an economic de- 
cline, particularly effecting small- 
or theatre owners — really have 
us at the crossroads. 

For the class houses the prob- 
les is less One of finance than of 
supply. Still, to date, nothing has 
been offered that affords, definite 
promise that the elusive something 
that will really bring the public 
back to the boxoffices has been dis- 

Oldtimers recall the passing of 
the legitimate stage and the sub- 
sequent demise of vaudeville. Then 
came silent pictures arid their 
complete capitulation to the Voice 
of A1 Jolson and his contempora- 
ries^-dow'n to the marvelous spec- 
tacles and color productions Of our 

The advent; of sound provided 
the same indecisions as exist now. i 
The expense was prohibitive to a 1 
great segment of theatre owners 
but time and science worked out ■ 
the problems so that business again 
prospered. j 

Until recently, despite an unrea- 
sonable and exorbitant Federal ! 
admission tax, things held together’ 
quite W'ell — ^but during' this time 
there occurred other changes, such ' 
as price increases, over-emphasis 
on “class” production, with the 
consequent loss of popular mass . 
appeal. Television, once feared arid I 
now being tested by us to cushion 
its own impact, can well become 
an ally instead of a destructive 
thing. It has many problems of its 
(Continued on page 63) 

Gimmicks Not Enough; Also 

Give Branch Mgrs. More Say 

(Theatre Circuit and TV Operator) 

Mitch. Wolfson 


“Steady flow of product” puts 
reverse English on the business of 
killing the goose that laid the 
golden eggs, If the goose (produc- 
tion) doesn’t 
keep coming 
up with a suf- 
ficient quan- 
tity of those 
golden eggs 
she’ll die of 
ra a 1 n utrition 
because the 
public won’t 
be around to 
feed her. If 
p r e s ent-day 
producers do 
not maintain 
a steady flow of product then there 
will have to be other producers or 
a major percentage of theatres will 
be forced to close. And, if it be- 
comes necessary for some exhibi- 
tors to engage in some sort of pro- 
duction. I think ways will be found 
to make it legal with Uncle Sam. 

Fewer but bigger pictures can’t 
keep theatres going. Under the sys- 
tem by Which we must do business 
today there are not enough pictures 
even now to serve the theatres 
well. We all like to have a real 
whopping show once in a while but 
there should also be a constant 
flow of good pictures to keep the 
movie fan happy and the theatres 

We’re not'the public’s only form 
of convenient entertainment any 
more and most of the theatres that 
have no thought of putting in 
stereo sound and large screens still 
need improved standard equipment 
and properties to woo the public 
eye. We’ve got competition and 
we’ve got to compete, and be the 
best. Fancy sound and all-purpose 
screens should be installed where 

mrinm; ttiH.mHK'fiimtaMm 

■tfimii.iot mHiJidiimiMmiMihtuiMtmniMMWMjiimiHHr : 



iiMtiMMiiiuMiiu irtifm-MiiiiiitHiiHiimtjiHiriiHiMJHoiiJiiihoiim; 


Are we now bent on becoming a 
highly specialized, class business — 
a roadshow business? What is there 
in the record of roadshows (so- 
called legit) that leads one to point 
along the path traveled by them 
and to say: “There is industry sal- 

Even if that is the only means 
by which one can make $2-$4.000,- 
000 pictures or pay actors a quar- 
ter of a million for eight weeks’ 
work, but doesn't that mean ignor- 
ing a good part of a 55,000.000 
people-a-week attendance and de- 
stroying a billion or so. of property 
devoted to . theatres, including 
drivc-ins? But does any one care 
about a thing like that— in Holly- 
wood? Or in distribution? 

Can one think of any other in- 
dustry in America which has 
undertaken to contract its market 
and to got ever-increasing prices 
for its product? Hasn’t the path of 
financial success usually been quite 
along the other line? , Everybody 
knows this business is different, 
but if we make it different enough 
will we not get like grand opera, 
if we can get a tax free position 
and a subsidy? . 

Of course some big pictures at 
advanced admission prices do fan- 
tastically well. But do they do 
fantastically well because they are 
getting all of the advantages of a 
going and popular business? Is 
there any more logic in the indus- 
try going exclusively that way than 
there would be in the Old gag about 
a diet solely of caviar? 

It would sceiri that some Cinema- 
Scope is good. Cineramas, too, 
where the market will support it. 

And some 3-D. And some advanced 

admission spectacles. But should 
these not be built upon the founda- 
tion of a popular amusement? 
Would it seem necessary to go so 
whole hog for them that the drive- 
ins with their family appeal and 
the small town theatres with their 
need of three or more programs a 
week should be murdered in the 

Might it be that the success of 
those things is due to the fact that 
they arc exceptional — like a World 
Series or a Bowl game? But which 
one is exceptional when you get a 
regular diet of. them? 

Of course it may be necessary to 
have fewer pictures and higher ad- 
mission prices if we can only pro- 
duce S2.Q0Q.000 attractions, and. if 
we must pay a “name” a couple of 
hundred thousand or more for 
eight weeks’ work. But hasn’t Uni- 
versal pretty well proven that there 
are profits .also along a different 
line.' — profits Which will cease to 
exist if that market is starved, out 
by too little product for its main- 

Of course one can say that the 
pendulum .will swing back, and 
surely it- will. But can it make the 
return swing if, in the meanwhile, 
so much of the present plant and 
present market is destroyed? 
Would that plant be rebitilt and 
the market be easily reestablished? 
Arc better than a billion dollars 
worth of plant and a market of 
55,000,000 or so customers a week 
to be thrown away idly? 

Are we maybe going to losq it to 
Television anyway, and is it smart 
just to surrender quickly?. But 
wouldn’t that, be dartin. cowardly? 

they can be afforded; oilier thea- 
tres should get modern. 

The motion picture better had 
not cease to be the "poor man’’? 
entertainment.” Fye got a hunch 
that the public is beginning to 
think a roadshow engagement, is so 
named because it was arranged by 
highwaymen. To maintain a ^pffi- 
cient quantity of theatregoers 
' (fans) we’ve got to keep the public 
j pretty confident that if they've got 
’ two bucks in their pockets it’s safe 
. to ask the girl friend to a show and 
a box of popcorn. If be has to 
phone the theatre and ask every 
time we’ll soon find him turning 

3 TV channel selector instead of 
dialing the telephone. 

When all the bugs are out of the 
process I imagine that most everv 
picture would be enhanced by 
Cinemascope but good old 2-D can- 
not be ignored for a long time to 
come— we want the little exhibitor 
in Hahira, Ga., and his public to 
continue to help pay some of the 
production costs. 

The industry is always at a stage 
where definite standards are de- 
sirable, but at this point the indus- 
try has progressed to a stage where 
one definite standard is economi- 
cally impossible. For a time, until 
mass production brings Cinema- 
Scope-like equipment down to a 
price the small exhibitors can pay, 
we 11 have to have conventional 
motion pictures while the more 
favored theatres experiment with 
the new dimensions and effects 
until the better new process is 
found and standardized. 

Third dimension trill boost the 
boxoffice take of certain pictures 
adapted to the use of 3-D frorri 
; time to time, provided the quality 
of the picture is good in the first 
place. The boxoffice of the few 
good 3-D pictures so far has suf- 
fered because the early pictures in 
3-D had only that novelty and little 
else. But while the public might 
go for 3-D once in a while I do not 
believe that they will put up with 
wearing glasses for every show. 
Let’s face it— the future' of 3-D 
depends on public acceptance and 
not exhibitor acceptance. Except 
for intermissions. the public 
doesn't care if it takes four pro- 
jectors, Some pood pictures will 
benefit from 3-D, preferably in a 
single-projector system most lv for 
the convenience and saving for the 

Quality, should alwavs be shot 
for. but we’ve got to have suffi- 
cient new pictures to keep those 
who have the movie habit coming 
to the theatres. If there’s nothing 
new for a month we might create 
^ lot of new baseball fans. 

Any saving that the produccrs- 
' distributors can effect arid pass on 
! to exhibitors would be a welcome 
; move if the reduction in releases 
i gets too sharp there will be a re- 
duction in the number of theatres 
for the exchanges to ship to.. We 
are competing with infinite variety 
; so we'd better dish out some our- 
' selves. 

If they can get product many 
theatres will stay open and con- 
tinue to serve the public. This will 
necessarily be a theatre-by-thcatre 
decision with riiany factors in- 
volved: economic conditions: pop- 
ulation shifts;, obsolescence; ar.d 
product, product, product. 

I don’t favor a Smalier industry 
but it is very apt to shrink for a 
v.hile at least. Lifting a punitive 
excise legislation will alleviate it 
i to a great extent but in the period 
! of transition some situations will 
1 suffer. < „ 


Forty-eighth P^RtWTY Annivertary 

Wednesday* January 6, 1954 


(Pres,, Stanley Warner Corp.) 

What’s ahead for exhibition? for stage and stadium, and as a 
Can we count on a real future for | {^ special audience attrac 

the theatre end of our industry. ^ | A closed circuit can play to liun- 

. Exhibitors, debating the merits dreds of thousands — and some day 
of new media and new equipment , . to a niiIllon-i-instead ''of confining 
are trying |o forecast the theatre 


of tomorrow in order to risk a con- 
siderable investment today. 

I believe exhibition has a great 
future, an exciting future; a future 

the audience to . the number 
seats at the place of origin. 

To bur regular screen features 
we will add as consistent program 
items, sports, legit- shows and 
grand opera. Presently everything 

, • : in entertainment will be shown in 

with new theatre policies, new ei -, mo tj on picture theatres. This is the 

tertainment on our screens — with a exhibition policy of tomorrow, 
wider service to more kinds of au- 
diences than we have ever had in 
the past. 

The basic elements of exhibition 
remain the same; the camera, the 
projection, the screen, sound, and 
a comfortable theatre seat. 

Even Cinerama, which is not 
merely a modification of existing 
process but an entirely new method 
of shooting and showing motion 
petures— a whole series of inte- 
grated inventions^ — is based upon 
the same funadmentals as the origi- 
nal flickers. 

Whether we use film or tape, 
what we all know needs to be re- 
peated — that no entertainment can 
survive on the strength of me- j 
chanical ingenuity alone, no mat- ! 
ter how wide the screen or how j 
stereophonic the sound or how ■ 
dimensional the picture. ‘ [ 

Entertainment is a medium of; 
human communications: what it 1 

Vs. Mass Prod. 



Wishful thinking doesn’t sell 
tickets at the boxoffice. What is 
put on the screen is the determine 
ing factor that attracts the ticket- 
buying public. 

You d.o n ’ t 
have to con- 
suit a crystal 
ball to forsee 
the trend of 
today. It’s in 
the direction 
of the big and 
important pic- 
ture.. Exhibi- 
t-tors are gen- 
tlemen who 
are very easy 
to please, pro- 

Metro Party in From Cairo 

Metro contingent in Cairo' for 
the filming of “Valley 'of the 
Giants, ” returned to New York 
yesterday (Tues.) and left immedi- 
ately for the Coast. 

Group included players Robert 
Taylor, Eleanor Parker, Carlos 
Thompson and Kurt Kasznar, di- 
rector Robert Plrosh, cameraman 
Robert Surtees," publicity unit man 
Morgan. Hudgins, studio staffers 
John Schmidts and Helen Parrish, 
and make-up man Keeter Sweeney. 

Pre-Selling and Savvy Campaigns 
At Point of 6.0. Need Hypoing 


(Pres., American Broadcasting-Paramount Theatres) 

WB $ 16 in 

Costas Much As 

W ilium Goetz 

. . . c . „ vided of course, you send them 
says is more important than “° stellar screen attractions. Since 

they wait with open arms for the 
.. . " ^.g ones ^ naturally the producer’s 

desire is to accommodate his cus- 

But every picture can’t be a big 
one or an important one, which 
gives an edge to the independent 
producer who can wait until the 
property he considers ideal for the 
big grosser comes along. 

When I was in charge of produc T 
tion at Universal-International we 
initiated a program to develop new 
talent. At that time there was con- 
siderable discussion about the star 
system fading into oblivion, but 
that was not the reason we went 
ahead with the ‘new faces’ plan. It 
was a desire to build our own play-, 
ers and also to avoid the high sal- 

I think all can agree that the cur- 
rent “technical revolution” is more 
than shot in the arm, that enter- 
tainment has been enhanced by 
3-D and Cinemascope, that Cinera- 
ma: has added a plus factor never 
before . experienced- — the feeling 
of audience participation. 

It’s now up to the creative 
minds, who hold the fate of the 
industry in their hands, to use 
these new media and process to the 
best advantage in each method. 
Then we can be certain that this 
technical inoculation is not a tem- 
porary pick-me-up.. but- an added 
vjtamin. which will keep the in- 
dustry in good health for a long 

. .These developments add variety aries of the topflight actors and 
to screen programs. The speed . actresses, so we could expend more 

with which exhibitors are equip- 
ping their theatres indicates t’’ct 
there is wide agreement about the 
boxoffice values of big screens, 
stereopticon pictures and stereo- 
phonic sound. Thousands of thea- 
tres. are being revamped to vre 

money on actual production. 

An independent producer doesn’t 
have the responsibility of bringing 
new players up the ladder, and 
with the emphasis on important 
pictures he must resort to the 
marquee names because names do 



Countless thousands of miles of 
film have run through the motion 
picture projectors since Variety 
began calling the turns at the 
theatre box- 
office. At the 
time we War- 
ners were 
showing our 
first silent 
flic k ers in 
1903 at the 
Bijou Dream 
Nickelod eon 
in New Castle, 

Pa., Variety 
was yet to lift 
the voice that _ . . 

w as to be L * Warner 

heard around the world of show 

We’ve seen tremendous changes, 
vast growth, great improvements. 
We’ve weathered innumerable 
crises, arid emerged from them 
bigger, stronger and better than 

In all those 50 years never has 
there been one which . has brought 
more sweeping changes, such tech- 
nical advances and so many alar- 
ums in screen entertainment as the 
! one just ended. Except for the pe- 
! riod in the mid-1920s when we at 
Warner Bros, spearheaded the rev- 
olution which brought talking pic- 
tures, the year 1953 must go down 
unchallenged as the era of the 
great change, all for the good of 
our industry. 

In such a period of transition it 
is hazardous to gaze into the crys- 
tal _ball, or don the prophet’s. robe, 
and come up with predictions of 
what the future will bring. I never 
have appointed myself as a spokes- 
man for the motion picture indus- 
! try and I find it more satisfying 
; to make screen entertainment than 
to speculate upon the trends it will 

The public writes its own ver- 
dicts in black or red ink at the 
: boxoffice. To try to out-guess, or 
outsmart audiences is disastrous. 
To use the best judgment experi- 
: ence and years of training can give 
! in trying to please the public is 
j the course we at Warner Bros, 
choose to follow. 

L. H. Goldenson 

Si Fabian recently stated in an 
address that the selling of a pic- 
ture divides into two separate 
operations. First, the pre-selling 
while the pic- 
ture is being r 
made, and sec- 
ond, the cam- 
paign for the 
point of sale. 

He devoted 
most of his 
talk to the 
selling of pic- 
tures from the 
standpoint Of 
the point 6f 
sale in large 
circuits, and 
he gave a very clear and learned 
dissertation on the importance of 
the theatre manager in this phase 
of picture selling. 

There is no question but that 
the theatre manager plays an ex- 
tremely vital part in the sale of 
his attraction. He is the one who 
knows his patrons and must 
scheme out the. methods with 
which to reach them. He is the 
one who determines what kind of 
ballyhoo to use and he is the one 
who arranges the promotional tie-* 
ins. In short, he must be a show- 
man who keeps resorting to a bag 
of tricks which may be old but 
which he improves, alters and 
pumps new life into. 

But there are many cases where 
a manager with all the showman- 
ship in the world just cannot sell 
even a good picture. These are 

Darryl F. Zanuck 

every variety of lens and aspect help make good pictures important. I. As production head of our stu- 
dios it is my responsibility to chart 

ratio and bookers are learning to 
juggle 2-D. 3-D and Cinemascope. 

Vaster Audience Potential 

» is new repertoire needs a few 
of the' older specialities; specifical- 
ly. vaudeville and stage attractions 
to give us complete variety rr.d 
combine, yesterday with tomorrow. 

That’s coming too. Some. of. tis have 

already sampled the new com- 

binations, not live, but through the Exhibitors want the top names 
television eye, and it will bring t-o decorate their marquees and so 
audiences into our theatres, for cio the producers. But high salaries 

I don’t think the star system in 
Ho lywood is on the downward 
trail. Perhaps the business has 
undergone a change where the star 
is not the No. 1 factor, It’s been 
said before and Will be said again, 
subject matter must carry the ball; 
then the weight of the boxoffice 
name or names will enhance the 
gross, receipts. 

Participations I 

entertainments never before avail 
able or practical in motion picture 

In. the earlier days of exhibition 
we spliced a picture show to si re- 
presentations. or five. acts of v;hi:’c- 
Ville, or name bands;- then all there' 
attractions died and pictures v.c ni 
it alone. 

Pictures were, pretty successful 
and complacent, until televiVm 
turned jut to be 
rific competition 
screen.. We can 

AVe il have to marry the dmc 
Some of- you • may feel you <*:r' 

can be strong obstacles. One way 
lo skirt these obstacles is through 
the participation deal. Giving a 
star the opportunity to share in the 
profits is helpful, affording the 
producer the opportunity of invest- 
ing his cash to get the maximum 
on the screen. 

This is another helpful factor in 
making important pictures. If it 
lakes a big budget to put together 
the big one, the extra $200,000 

to ty a 01 ' cHnariI y spent forvthe star can 

the* thJ w Ro into production. 1{ the actor can 
•f , hc , l - e do business for you and is willing 

t high-hat her. to gamble, he’s entitled to all he 

qtanrlino i.V, * j ;. x Mueaium nas Deen raised, 

standing up tor a shotgun must every picture be an erve 9 

bm I see It as a legitimate court- . This,' of course, mutt be fuled^oui 

* * finiplrl^* Tliom m»ll . Ua n .« A ii j _ 

can get. 

The question has been raised, 



rp. . , • quickly. There will be small pic- 

i nrough closed circuit television lures because there still is a mar-, 
we can show a greater variety of ket.for them, perhaps not as big as 
progiiams than was ever thought it once was, yet still a market. But 
possible for picture houses. jOu r_ . as.wt iBL-higger. and-niore -imporiant 

?r » . • a < «■ . J 

that course. I have no occult pow- 
: ers to guide me but I do have a 
j magnificent organization, top cre- 
ative and technical talent and the 
1 resources of a great company of 
; many long years of standing. 

: ■ Fewer But Bigger | 

We are going to make fewer pic- 
tures in 1954 than we have in pre- 
vious years. They will be bigger 
pictures and better pictures be- 
cause we will put into some 16 
attractions the same budget that 
formerly went into 42 pictures. 
Every dollar of those expanded 
individual budgets will go into 
i great stories, the top talent of the 
| production quality. 

! We believe in Cinemascope and 
have announced that most of our 
1 pictures will be made in that me- 
! dium. Our confidence in Cinema- 
Scope is based upon what we are 
; seeing on our own studio projec- 
tion room screens from currently 
' filming and completed productions 
j in this medium. 

! The first CinemaSeope produc- 
tion from Burbank to reach the 
I screen will be “The Command,” 
which is presently being scored by 
Dimitri Tiomkin and pointed to a 
January release. Starring Guy 
| Madison, Joan Weldon and James 
Whitmore, -“The Command” is «i 
! colorful ' outdoor action drama 
; from--J-ames Warner BellalT’s"Saf- 

Cnivnum* ' a ..r ' r w i UUH.1 DUlldll r 

set eenx aie -successful substitutes, i (Continued on page 49) i (Continued on page 49) 



Among the many reasons why 
the new methods such as Cinema- 
Scope are a blessing in disguise to 
the film industry is the fresh op- 
portunity it 
has provided 
f o r eliminat- 
ing the small 
pictures which 
sustain the 
evils of — the 
double fea- 

By enlarging 
the vision and 
perspective of 
screen drama 
as well as the 
proportions of 
the camera field, the new method 
encourages the producer to make 
pictures that will be bigger in 
[scope and longer in duration. Pic- 
! tures of this type need only a 
1 small supplement to round out 
the longer evening’s entertain- 
ment . which many ticket buyers 
feel is desirable. 

This supplement can be provid- 
ed by short subjects. The short 
subjects which result from Cine- 
mascope photography will, I . be- 
lieve, be fully satisfying to the 
public. They are not to be com- 
pared in quality, scope or enter- 
tainment value to the kind of 
shorts which were possible under 
the limitations of the routine film 

But the film industry as a whole 
must make a conscientious effort 
to eliminate the double feature if 
it is to regain full health and. 
prosperity. This necessity must 
not be ignored for the sake of 
quick or easy profit, because in 
the long run double features be- 
! get mediocrity, and mediocrity 
will set the industry back into 
j the doldrums. 

i Another thing the industry must 
make is a conscientious effort to 
standardize on a unified photo- 
graphic system. It is our conten- 
tion that, since Cinemascope, has 
become a trademark and has re- 
ceived the unquestionable endorse- 
ment: of the public, it offers the 
possibility of standardization. In 
the United States 870 theatres are 
already equipped for it,, with an- 
other/ 60 abroad, and installations 
are mounting as fast as equipment 
is at hand. 

Bigger pictures mean longer 
! runs and therefore fewer pictures 
; need be madei.P.icAures like “The 
|Rob‘c ,T find “How to Marry A Mil- 
I (Continued on page 48) 

cases in which the picture has not 
been properly pre-sold. 

I feel, as Fabian does, and that 
is that pre-selling generally from 
Hollywood has fallen off substan- 
tially and that it is obvious that 
this decline may have an impor- 
tant bearing upon the lack of pub- 
lic response to pretty good pic- 
tures and may account for the fail- 
ure of fine productions to make a 
profit not only for the distributor 
but for the exhibitor. For many 
years, I have advocated a system 
of pre-selling which, I believe 
would be of invaluable aid in the 
ultimate sale of motion pictures, 

I feel that, as soon as an idea 
for a motion picture is . con- 
ceived and it is decided that such 
a motion picture will be made, a 
member of the producer’s adver- 
tising and exploitation staff should 
be assigned to the picture. There- 
after, having familiarized .himself 
with the! story content and cast 
that man should follow that pic- 
ture right through its embryonic, 
production and release stages. Dur- 
ing that time he should seize every;, 
opportunity that presents itself to 
bring this picture to the public’s 
attention and, if necessary, he 
should make such Opportunities. 
With the personalities available in 
Hollywood who are in demand in , 
the newspapers, radio and televi- 
sion, this should be a comparative- 
ly easy task. This constant pub- 
licity should be had not only when 
the picture is in its embryonic and 
production stages, but also during 
any period when it is deemed ad- 
visable to keep the finished prod- 
uct on the shelf. I am confident 
that this type of publicity, fol- 
lowed by the proper advertising 
and exploitation campaign when 
the picture is released, must re- 
sult in a terrific plus for the pic- 

I feel the time is now ripe to 
again urge this upon our industry. 
We are now entering a new era 
with our new techniques in pro- 
jection and sound, arid the release 
of the first Cinemascope pictures 
have proven to us that the public 
is intensely interested. Let us 
make certain that this interest 
does not wane. 

I Case of ‘Roman Holiday’ | 

— ~I would like to dwell for a mo- 
ment on a problem , which sorely, 
needs a solution. I am referring 
to some of the sophisticated come- 
dies, and dramas and the sweet 
type of story or comedy like 
“Roman Holiday” which are very 
good pictures, but which never 
seem to get off the ground. Some 
of these, pictures, because of astute 
campaigning, have had some meas- 
ure of success in metropolitan 
areas, but most of them' fail all 
over the country. It is indeed ex- 
tremely vexing to watch a good 
picture get very little or nothing 
at the boxoffice, and it is difficult 
to believe that there is not a suf- 
ficient quantity of the public to 
whom these types of picture ap- 
peal enough to make of them fi- 
nancial successes. It can only 
mean that the people: interested 
in these types of pictures are not 
being reached and, if this is the 
reason, the advertising and ex- 
ploitation approach to these types 
of pictures cannot be correct. 

I do not propose to hold myself 
out as an expert, because I do not 
have any solution. Perhaps par- 
ticular attention should be given 
to the various mediums of adver- 
tising in an attempt to find out 
why one particular medium, can 
sell one type of picture and not 
another. For example, we have 
had so much success in selling the 
shock-type of picture on television 
that the poor results obtained 
through that medium in selling a 
sweet type of picture are almost 
unbelievable. If a way could be 
devised to sell this latter type on 
TV and obtain the same success 
as with shock pictures, what a 
Wonderful return we could get for 
our advertising and exploitation 
dollar. Fabian who touched on 
this problem briefly in his ad- 
dress, had a very good idea in 
urging that our industry be geared 
to testing advertising campaigns 
for these types of pictures. In any 
event, this problem is deserving of 
intense study by everyone in our 
industry, since the benefits of a 
proper solution would be inval- 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth P^fofctE^Y Anniversary 




Must Remain That Way as Its 40% 
Revenue Spells the Profit or 
Loss Margin 

Wally Spengler, the most famous, the most highly paid 
television comic in the world, looked darkly at the ashtray 
and its mangled m und of cigaret butts. Mechanically, 

he started to empty it. Then, almost as mechanically, he 


“Na,” he thought, “let the bandits 
see how many cigarets I smoke. Let 
...fern see it there for themselves in that 
ashtray — the sleeplessness, the sweat 
of getting a show on each Saturday 
night. The pills, the seconals, the as- 
pirin, the benzedrine. . . 

Wally put a torch to another ciga- 
ret, his fifth in three minutes. Weari- 
ly, he lifted his body from the couch 
shot with expensive metallic thread. 

He lurched towards the wall mirror 

and took a long look. The eyes, deep- 
rhH Stivers se t and blooshot, betrayed all the 

pressure. God darn it, he growled, the sleep, that’s the 

secret. I know many other people can’t sleep either, but 

they don’t face 30,000,000 viewers once a week— 30,000,000 
pairs of eyes waiting to be lit up with laughter, 30,000,000 
bellies waiting to be nudged into convulsion. 

He surrendered to the couch again and reflected oh the 
previous day and night which had melted into this morm 
lng. No sleep in between, none at all. He thought back 
to yesterday’s rehearsal in that badlyrventilated, poorly- 
lit hotel suite. . . 

“How in the devil do I take it?” he thought. “Why don’t 
I just collapse? I must have the strength of a bull. The 
next time a guy tells me his troubles, I’ll ask him one 
question: ‘Do you sleep?’ If he says yes, I’ll spit clean in 


( Director Scientific, Motion Picture & Photographic 
Products Division Business and Defense Services 
Administration U. S , Department of Commerce) 

T ,. .. Washington. 

.Indications are that 1953 set a record for remittances 
of film earnings from showings of United States films in 
the international market.. Estimates of dollar remit- 
tances from abroad during 1953 have ranged as high 

as $170,000,000. The outlook for the 
future is not without its problems, 
however, and the belief is growing 
that it will be. difficult to maintain the 
level of 1953 remittances and gross 
b.o. business in the foreign markets. 

Principal factors leading to the be- 
lief that the future of U. S. films 
abroad may be more difficult are the 
rising competition from foreign-pro- 
duced films, especially Italian and 
German productions, the gradually 
diminishing pool of frozen U. S. 
Nate Golden earnings, and the trend for foreign 
producers to want guaranteed earn- 
ings of their films in the American market. Barring un- 
foreseen serious difficulties, however, foreign business for 
American films should continue at a very high level. 

One of the reasons wr y foreign remittances were so 
high, in 1953 was an increase in. the transfer of blocked 
funds from countries which had previously allowed only 
limited or no remittances. This ivas particularly true 
with regard to blocked film earnings in Brazil, France, 
Sweden, and Japan. 

his eye.” • . . 

He remembered what a playwright at Sardi’s had told 
him a month; ago. “You need distractions, releases. Art 
galleries, perhaps. What do you know about ceramics? 
What about analysis?” - 

His face twisted into an ironic grin. How many gags 
could he lift from Picasso? And he swiftly created the 
dialog with the analyst: 

“How did you spend your childhood, Mr. Spengler?” 

“Fighting with the drummer!” 

What I really need is a girl, one girl who will be pretty 
and patient and understanding. But where do you find 
her? Do you take a Variety ad which says: “Wanted— 
somebody who can stand being alone most of the time, 
must put Up with moodiness, temperament, bathe in re- 
flected glory, ask no questions, just be there at the right 
words. Or no words at all — just silent understanding.” 

He thought of the singers, Bing and Perry and the rest. 
Sure, they can be relaxed and casual. Right now,. at this 
very second, 500 songwriters all over the world are sitting 
writing songs for them to do. And if none of, them are 
worth a quarter, there’s always the backlog of Kern and 
Gershwin and Berlin. 

- Take Me Away From This [ 

Right now, at this moment, I got three lousy, overpaid 
writers who will write me ‘into oblivion in one season if I 
watch them like a hawk. A Broadway show, that’s what I 
should do— same thing every night instead of these blank- 
ety-blank TV deadlines. But do Rodgers & Hammerstein 
send for me? Does Josh Logan? Not a chance. I ad lib 
too .much, they insist. I’m too zany. Do they ever see 
■ the drivel I get to say? Just give me civilized material 
and I’ll stick to the script, pal. Stick to it six nights a 
week and two matinees. 

Another cigaret, and the muse twisted. Who needs 
Broadway? I reach more people in a half hour than a 
Broadway hit comic in two years. And by myself, too. Oh, 
I get help here and there. Rocky Marciano has seconds, 
too. But who does the belting when the gong sounds? 

Wally looked at the big clock, a gift from the grateful 

“Those so-and-so writers are 10 minutes late now. If 
they tell me they overslept, I’ll spit right in their faces. 
Got a better idea. I think I’ll give them a real stunner. It 
"ill go like this: ‘Fellers, sit down, I got a brief announce- 
ment. I am retiring, quitting, getting out. Going to Rome 
for a year. Then to Maine for another. Take all these 
jokes, don’t slam the door, see you in two years, don’t 
write me, 111 write you!’ ” 

As he deliciously, constructed his goodbyes, the doorbells 
chimed and the parade shuffled by him into the living 
room. In order, Lou Cahn, A1 Rose, Milt Balzer, the 
writers, augmented by Bart Samuels* Wally’s personal 
manager, and Lester Span, the producer of the show. 

This is going to be purely wonderful, thought Wally. A 
camera. I should havo a camera to record their stupid 
faces when I tell ’em. 

. As he opened his mouth to begin, Bart Samuels, ex- 
ploded: “Hold the phone, King. I got a flash that won’t 
Keep. The network research department called 10 minutes 
Kgo. . I should givd' you slow and tantalizing. But I 
Know your sense of pacing, so here it is quick and to the 
^ypoint The latest Trendex is in and you now stand 
i 74/4, the. highest in the history of television broadcast- 
Uf; Jofhp of 14 points. When the sponsors hear, they 
will flip, flip, I ten you.’* 

.Wally stared at the group for close to 30 seconds. . Then 
°P ene d wide, he bit his lips savagely, pounded the 
screamed*^* 1 ! hand into the open palm of his other, and 

i n Smendrex, ! got a flash for all of you. We’re 

tHnb 1 V 0g J ether ' on « big ball club. We gotta push harder, 
» wt) rk harder. We gotta come up with new 
go to ? eW j g , immlcllcs * Beck, this is no time to relax and 

'• British Accord _| 

One of the bright spots of the past year was the re- 
newal of the ’’British film agreement in September after 
only a few. days’ negotiations. The new agreement, cov- 
ering the year beginning Oct. 1. 1953, again provides for 
the transfer of $17,000,000 annually to the U. S. and also 
contains provisions permitting convertibility of certain 
amounts of U! S. production investments in Britain. 

Hollywood was riot so successful, however, in negotiating 
a new film pact with France. The French agreement 
expired on June 30, 1953, and although a four-months ex- 
tension to Nov. 1, 1953, was arranged, no real progress., 
toward a new agreement had been made. at that date; Re- 
ports from abroad indicate that the French are firm in 
wanting a reduction in the number of U. S. film import 
licenses, (under the old agreement 121 dubbed feature 
films were to be imported annually) and also an insistence 
for some rnonetary assistance in the distribution of 
French films in the Yank market. 

In April, 1953, the Italian-American motion picture 
agreement was extended until Aug. 31, 1954. Although 
the Statistical breakdown as to the . disposition of U. S. 
film earnings in Italy remained unchanged, important 
changes were written into the extended agreement. This 
agreement provides that 50 r o of the film earnings in 
Italy go into blocked accounts. is available for re- 

mittance (an attempt is being made to raise this to 40^ K 
with the rema inder going to Italiap Film Export, an 
Organization to promote the exports of Italian films. 
However, none of the funds going to Italian Film Export 
were to be expended for the acquisition of distribution 
rights to Italian films for the U. S. market or for the 
conduct of distribution activities in the U. S. The new 
agreement also provided for the broadening of usages 
which American film companies might make of funds 
from their 50^ blocked accounts. 

Problems relating to importation of U. S. films and 
transfer of foreign exchange have been encountered in 
Spain and the Netherlands. In Spain. American pro- 
ducers are refusing to purchase import licenses for their 
films at the price asked by the Spanish Government: 
After having apparently solved difficulties in connection 
with Spanish import licenses by an agreement whereby 
the Spanish Government, instead of Spanish producers, 
would control the . sale of such licenses, new stumbling 
blocks have been encountered, among them the alloca- 
tion of permits to individual companies. 

In the Netherlands, the U. S. industry protested 
against the low rental ceiling of 32 , a r r for their films. 
The situation there reached the point where Hollywood 
threatened to withdraw front the Bioscoop Bond, the 
Netherlands film association. In effect this would have 
meant withdrawal front the market, as membership in 
the Bond is necessary to distribute films in the Nether- 
lands, However, in November a new agreement was 
(raached which reportedly increased film rental per- 
centages and provided for special treatment for new 
projection methods such as 3-D, panoramic, and other 
films with an illusion of three dimension. 

American pix encountered considerable difficulty dur-> 
lng the past several years in the Brazilian market These 
problems have included playing time quotas for Brazilian 
films, regulations requiring copies of imported films to 
be printed in Brazil, arid difficulties in obtaining import 
licenses and transferring film earnings. However, the 
situation in Brazil in recent months has steadily im- 
proved. In July, 1953, an agreement was reached 
whereby remittance of the full amount of. about $16,000,- 
000 of blocked film earnings was to be accomplished. 
By Nov. 1 it was reported that some $4,500,000 had been 
remitted from this market. Import license problems are 
being reduced and it is believed that normal trade re- 
lations between U. S. film companies and Brazil (one 
of our major film markets) will soon materialize. 

There has been but little improvement in the Argen- 
tine market with regard to importation and distribution 
of U. S. films during the past year. 

In April, 1953, the Japanese Government announced 
that an agreement had been reached with the U. S. 
covering the importation of films and transfer of earn- 
ings during the fiscal year beginning April 1, 1953. This 
agreement provides for the importation of 146 U. S. fea 




When Shakespeare opened, his comedy, “Taming of the 
Shrqw,” in London, it played to half-filled house. After 
the performance, he was heard roaring, “Well what do 
you expect? Everybody was out watching those new- 
fangled cock fights they’re putting on 
air over town.”: Now I wasn’t there 
to hear this personally. I was just a 
babe in arms at the time, but it Was 
told to me by a pretty good author- 
ity. Shakespeare, who started a lot 
of new gimmicks in the theatrical pro- 
fession, has gone down in history as 
the . first showman who alibied for 
bad business. Ever since, then, every 
playwright, actor and motion picture 
producer has developed some lulus to 
alibi a flop. 

Since the war, personal appearance 
tours throughout the country by 
comics have become a booming profession. When we comics 
go out on the road on one-night stands or one-week engage- 
ments, we all expect to break records. And every once 
in awhile, we lay an egg. And, I think We’Ve developed 
better explanations for a flop than any other branch of 
show business. To be a truly outstanding alibi artist, one 
must have at his command the most extensive set of logi- 
cal reasons for the simple fact that people just didn't 
want to see him in that town at that particular time. 

, It was beautiful weather? Well, you can’t expect people 
to come to a stuffy theatre when they could be out in the 
fresh air. It was raining? Well, you can’t blame anyone 
for not leaving the house in the rain. It was hot? Well, 
everyone Went to the beach. No, it was cold! Who’s 
crazy enough to go out in this freezing weather and stagger 
downtown to see a show! 

Why, look at the business the department stores did 
that day. Terrible! Oh, they did good business? There r s 
your answer— everyone was out shopping.. How can you 
buck all these big sales! 

Arid those agents ought to watchtheir timing when they 
set up these tours. Why didn’t they book you any place 
during the good holiday business? 

And if they book you during the holidays, naturally, 
you re dead! Nobody’s got any money before Christmas, 
except for Christmas shopping, and after Christmas they’re 
broke. Easter week we know is murder; Decoration Day 
weekend is the first chance people have to get out of 
town after a tough winter; on the 4th of July, everyone is 
shooting off firecrackers; on Labor Day, .they’re either at 
a parade or a political speech. In November, nobody does 
business because it’s just before election. On Election 
Day. everyone is out voting! And after election, all the 
excitement goes out of a city. Before Thanksgiving, every- 
body’s spending their money on buying turkeys, arid all the 
rest of the stuff for Thanksgiving dinner. On Thanks- 
giving Day. any dope knows that you stay home and have 
dinner with your family. After Thanksgiving, you’ve got 
the horrible prospect of all the Christmas shopping you've 
got to do. so who’s got money to go to a theatre? 

In the spring, everybody gets baseball fever, so you're 
dead. In the summer, everyone is out of town on vacation; 
in the fall, everyone is going to football games, arid how 
can you buck basketball in the winter? 

If you’ve got a lot of tough opposition, you've got to 
split the money with the other shows so you can’t do good 
business. If you are the only attraction in town, there 
isn’t enough excitement to bring people downtown. 

And that strike. All those poor guys hanging around. 
They haven't had a paycheck in two months. Where 
do you expect them to get money for entertainment? Labor 
relations good? Everybody working? Sure, then they 
put in so much overtime they haven't, got time for shows. 

Just look at the ad campaign! You mean lo stand there 
and tell me that with one lousy ad they expected to let 
people know that you're in town? Oh. they took a lot of 
full page ads? Ehh— who looks at newspapers toda.v? 
Everybody’s looking at television. Oh. they had a lot of 
television trailers on? Well, when you give them all that 
free entertainment at home, how do you expect them to 
come downtown and pay $4.80 for a seat — and how about 
a buck for parking the car— and then a couple of bucks 
for a bite after the show. After all. there arc very few 
millionaires these days. 

And there was no publicity! Oh. there were nineteen 
news breaks, plus arrival pictures on every front page, 
and five big interviews. Yeah, but on the same day. they 
exploded the H-Bomb and scared everyone half to death. 
Thinking of that, how can anyone get in the mood for 
entertainment. And those interviews . . . they gave away 
the whole show, The readers know your routine better 
than you do. Why should they pay to hear it? 

And let’s face it, nobody could get a babysitter while 
you were in. town. It was just an unfortunate break that 
every old lady in tow.n had tickets to see Libcrace who 
was playing in Indian Creek. 20 miles away. 

Jack Benny 

tUre films arid for the remittance of 30 r r of the cur- 
rent film rentals of U. S. film companies with the other 
70?c going into blocked accounts. The Japanese Govern- 
ment also agreed to allocate foreign exchange for the 
remittance during the current fiscal year of $2,500,000, 
which represents about' one-third of the total value of 
accumulated yen earnings held in Jfipan by U. S', dis- 
tributors as of March 31, 1953; 

It is believed that every attempt will bb made bv {lie 
U. S. to expand opr market in India and Pakistan, One 
of the chief problems encountered in India is the small 
number of theatres to accommodate their large popula- 

The distribution of Yank pix in the world market is of 
major importance to the motion picture industry. While 
estimates vary as to just how important the foreign market 
is to U. S, companies, there is general agreement that 
revenue from abroad is playing an increasingly important 
role in the general economic stability of the industry. It 
has been estimated that foreign revenues account for about 
40 % of the total income of the U. S. film industry, and this 
foreign revenue spells the difference between profit and 
loss for the American fridustry. 




Wednesday, January 6, I954 



Hollywood, spot for 1953, did title role in do, “The Big Heat;” Diane Foster, 
Bleakest period for fresh faces “Prince Valiant.” “Bad for Each Other.” 

In the annals of the screen was the Jay Robinson also rose during Warners: Dolores Dorn did feni- 
year just ended. There has been 1953, as Caligula in “The Robe” me lead opposite Randy Scott in 
a singular lack* of opportunity for and “Demetrius and the Gladia- “The Bounty Hunter” for first role, 
new talent. And 1954 looms equally tors;” Casey Adams, “Destination followed with “Phantom of the 



It’s economic. Studios have cut 

Gobi,” “Night People. 

Rue Morgue;” Merv Griffin, 

Metro: Customarily offers a siz- This Is Love.” 

their contract rosters to- the very able lineup of fresh upcomers but 1 Republic has Ben. Cooper, 
bone. Production has been drasti- missed out in 1953, Here are Vit- brought from Broadway legit for 
cally curtailed. These two facts torio Gassman, “Cry of the Hunt- “Thunderbirds;” Allied Artists 
alorie diminish the chances of the ed,” “Sombrero,” “Rhapsody;” boasts Keith Larsen, co-starred in 
unknown to show his wares. Add a Elaine Stewart, after being spot- "Arrow in the Dust.” Ih indie field, 
third factor: the decline of *B’ lighted in “The Bad and the Bean- Wayne-Fellows cast Broadway’s 
productions which provided the tiful,” snagged femme lead in Geraldine Page opposite John a. L. Mayer 


During the recent holiday sea- nal brawls and incessant feudinw 
son, I spent some time dreaming sooner or later they will be takS« 
of the gifts I should like, if it were out of our hands and conducted 
in my power, to present to my best according to the rules and personal 

friend, the mo- ambitions of bureaucrats and noli 
tidri picture ticians, totally unacquainted with 
Industry. Here the needs and nature of our busi 
are a few that ness. 

I think would Continuous research into n P u» 
£ han ^ techniques and processes, shS 
in .1954: to that maintained by every other 

Mor e pic- major industry, for without con. 
tuxes, for un- stant inquiry and scientific expert 
less our thea- ment we cannot hope to retain our 
tres on Main present preeminent slice of th P 
Street are public’s entertainment dollar. 

r^adv^w Rededication to the COMPO 
A. L. Mayer camp^ for the elimination of 

training ground for newcomers in “Take the High Ground!” now is Wayne in “Hondo,” and again set . . r, admission taxes for in addition to 

fhd nnst Tnriflv the struggling flninff “Rrierarinnn;” Nanette Fa- Mielrev Sbillane. the author, for product tne prosperity ana pres- their hasie iniustipe fho,, 

the past. Today the struggling doing “Brigadoon;” Nanette Fa- Mickey; Spillane, the author, for 
young player must seek other bray, “The Band Wagon;” Jeff co-star role in “Ring of Fear.” 
avenues to be discovered. Richards, “The Big Leaguef,” The year 1954 will see reduced 

Unpromising as the general situ- “Crest of the Wave.” Edmund Pur- shooting slates. Metro With 20' to 

tige of HoUywood^m also soon 
The year 1954 will see reduced wither .on .Vine Street. 

v _ • ... a a 1 i.» 1 a *i_i. 

their basic injustice, they furnish 
an ever-decreasing return to the 
national revenue, and an ever in- 

Unpromising as the general situ- “Crest of the Wave.” Edmund Pur- shooting slates. Metro with 20 to Better public relations, for with- creasing burden on our harassed 
ation is there still have been a dom was brought from N.Y. stage 22, down from around 35; 20th-Fox out the confidence and the under- boxoffices. . 

few individual bright lights, Au- for “Julius Caesar” and “The Stu- with from 12 to 16; Paramount, 16 standing of the people it serves no New f Gces andnci0 taicnts in 

drey Hepburn blossomed' ; ih'tb ' ( ^D; t i Pri nce.” 17;^ RKO, expected to be from media of information or entertain- pictures for, much as we cherish 

stardom in her first American pic- Columbia: Jack Lemmon co- eight to 12; Warners, probably 20 ment can function successfully in the stars of yesterday the new ppn 

ture, “Roman Holiday,” and fol- starred in “A Name for Herself,” or 22. On the other hand, Allied a modern world. eration on whose favor our futur P 

lowed that with “Sabrina Fair/’ ms first picture, co-stars again in Artists expects to hit around 33; Arbitration, for if we fail, within pravpc iho 

both at Paramount. “My Sister Eileen;” Jocelyn Bran- Columbia, 50 to 

Marilyn Monroe, although on her 
Way up for several years, zoomed 
into spectacular prominence. 

his first picture, co-stars again in Artists expects to hit around 33; 
“My Sister Eileen;” Jocelyn Bran- 1 Columbia, 50 to 55; UI, 34. 

Foreigners Got Breaks 

Some, “unknown” foreign players 

were imported for star roles in T M TJ. 

Hollywood pictures, . thus giving I I I "I I I . |“V 

them an edge. Mai Zetterling was ■ J ^ m-w 

brought from Sweden by Dena ¥ 

Productions to costar with Danny . By FRI 

Kaye in “Knock on Wood”; Para- 
mount picked Parisienne Nicol Future film historians will have it a lot easier 
Maurey to be Bing Crosby's femmet than the present generation of pix executives in 

Arbitration, for if we 

. rests, craves the reflection Of it« 

our own family, to settle our inter- 0 wn youth and high spirits in its 

screen lovers and heroes. 

a The abolition of Government 

g 7 c* • film censorship, for the freedom of 

O' UU1 vs speech and expression is the tra- 
dition which distinguishes our free 

■ "M ft m world from totalitarian slavery, and 

rt I'iTTr K1V no true art can ever attain its full 

dlliy J. 1 A stature hampered by legalistic re- 

V strictions and prudish prohibitions. 

The standardization of new tech- 
niques so that the outstanding 


g’ s 


lead in “Little Boy Lost.” 

Future film historians will have it a lot easier over what lenses to buy since only Bausch & Lomb product . of all companies can be 

an the present generation of pix executives in made them and channeled them through the equip- made available to all theatres, with- 

trying to size up the true meaning and import of the ment houses. out subjecting them to financial 

made them and channeled them through the equip- 
ment houses. 

Bella Darvi, Poland-born, was developments that rocked the business during. 1953. Story was different, how r ever, on screens and burdens greater than they can bear. 

discovered by Darryl Zanuck in They may call it “the year of the great experi- 
Paris and flown here for . top .role ment,” adding regretfully- that it just didn’t pan out. 
in “Hell and High Water,” and Or they may put it down in their books in bold let- 
now- is in “The Egyptian.” Lau- ters as a significant turning point, when Hollywood 
rence Harvey, London actor, makes recognized the folly of technical stagnation and, 
his American screen bow in War- roused by crisis, discovered new and exciting hori- 
riers’ “The Talisman,” and Lud- zons in the presentation of its pix. 
milla Tcherina was - summoned. Whatever the final verdict, there Is no question 

“The Talisman 
Tcherina was 

was - summoned. 

from Paris by UI for femme star in that 1953 will stand out as one of the landmarks in 

“Sign of the Pagan.” 

the fortunes of the industry, a year when 3-D proved 

Of these, only Mile. Maurey has how fickle the public really is, and Cinemascope 
thus far been glimpsed by the’ pub? became a household word of progress even before, 
lie. the other films being either anyone had witnessed 3 demonstration of the ana- 
still in the editing or production morphic widescreen process. 

stage. Carlos Thompson belongs to If Hollywood failed to go all out for CinemaScope 
the foreign contingent, too, an im- —even though exhibs should have 65 CinemaScopers 

port from Brazil, who made his coming their way during 1954 — it did nevertheless 
Hollvwood film debut in “Fort Al- switch to wider aspect ratios. A lively controversy 
giers.” then was cast opposite Lana developed over the comparative merits of stereo- 
Turner in “Flame and the Flesh” Phonic sound, and with Cinerama still looming big 
and now is one of the tops in on the scene, something new and simpler— Magna 
studio's “Valley of the Kings.” Theatre Corp.’s Todd-AO widescreen system— ex- 
Paramount leads with the num- cited the trade with a promise of great new attrac- 
ber of promising ■ newcomers, t tion— via the filmization of the - Rodgers & Hammer- 
starting with Miss Hepburn. List . musical, “Oklahoma!” 

also includes Rosemary Clooney, I The “revolution” in Hollywood, representing the 
who screened-bowed in “The Stars i first . extensive change in the production-distribution- 
Are Singing ” then “Here Com° I exhibition pattern since the advent of sound, affected 
the Girls.” ' “Red ’Garters” and | every corner of the business. It brought about 

“White Christmas”; Pat Crowley, feverish activity and a combination of uneasiness 
“Forever Fe m a 1 e.” “Garters.” and triumph. Not since the late ’20s had there been 
“Money from Home”; Audrey Dal- ! such a hubbub of speculation, pronunciamentos and 
ton, “Girls of Pleasure Island/’ ! predictions. And not for many years was the indus- 
“Casanova’s Big Night,” toppers tr y as united in the fervent belief that, come what 
here. may, something new, stronger and better would 

Others are Mary Murphy, loaned em erge. 

out for “Main Street to Broad- 1 : ’Twas Fv#>r Thus ' 

way” and on loanout ever since; — . r tnu8 

Joan Taylor, “The Savage,” first, Perhaps the most worried man in 1953 was the 
then loaned to Schenck-Koch for exhibitor. Where the studios took risks, he not only 
“War Paint”; Mile. Maurey; Guy shared them, but was faced with considerable invest- 
Mitchell, “Those Redheads from ment to implement the changes which, as he was 
Seattle”; Brian Keith, “Alaska told, would save his theatre, and insure the future 
Seas”; Joanne Gilbert, Kathryn for the entire business in. the face of rising compe- 
Grandstaff and Marla English. tition from television and other factors. 

. UI has a fairly sizable lineup but Theatre ops, traditionally on the cautious side, 
nothing compared to former years, were enthusiastic over strong grosses rolled up by 
nor as outstanding. Lori Nelson 20th-Fox’s CinemaScope initialler, “The Robe,” 
came through, in “All-American” which the company treated with a merchandising 
and “Tumbleweed”; Kathleen reverence ordinarily accorded a piece of fine art. 
Hughes, “It Came from Outer But exhibs didn’t care for the strings that 20th 
Space,” “The Glass Web”; Abbe attached to their prize-baby — CinemaScope. They 
Lane, “Wings of the Hawk,” “Ride were divided over the value of stereo sound. And 
Clear of Diablo.” they shouted in protest as Hollywood, reacting to 

Mamie Van Doren, UI’s own the economics of a new medium, began to drastically 

. TLTa ri 1 vn TVf “ A 1 !_ A rr\ n pi r* ^ *-» J Cllf. Dm (\ 1 1 ft i rt rt crlrorlc 

sound. According to 20th, which was anx- A wide expansion of theatre tele- 
ious to safeguard the quality of CinemaScope pro- vision together with the granting 
jection, none of its films could be booked by a by the Federal Communications 
house that didn’t have one of the two approved Commission of theatre TV chan- 
screens (Miracle Mirror or Astrolite). Furthermore* nels and licenses for subscription 
exhibs either had to equip for multi-channel sound television, from which, special 
or go wdt.hout 20th’s product since the* company re- events, will either be permanently 
fused to make available its pix with single-track channeled into American theatres 
optical sound. ' or into American homes. 

F : Exhibs’ Pressure Wins ! ■ - -Av!*!”?!® ? xMbitor ow’itatioii, 

- — — — — — = — — — so that theatre owners, now more 

By year’s end, prodded by the combined pressure than ever before confronted by 
of exhibs and screen manufacturers, 20th gave way. similar- problems, can overcome 
Declaring that it had 1,800 of the country’s large these , problems by acting and 
theatres already equipped with its <widescreens, the speaking as a unit on every fight- 
distrib said it would waive screen restrictions for ing front from Film Row to Con- 
“small or narrow”, houses. This, in effect, amounted necticut Avenue, 
to a capitulation since it was thought unlikely that Increased support by the indus* 
many. a dditional situations would take the, special try of the Variety Club Will Rogers 
20 th screens which are more expensive. : Memorial Hospital — for. what avails 

As. for sound, 20th agreed to a series of tests on our wealth and our power if we 
that issue. The company said that, once it had had fail to use them generously in be* 
a chance to evaluate the Results, it would reexamine half of those in our own ranks who 
its position re directional sound. Exhibs maintain stand in dire need of help and lov- 
that its too costly an item, particularly in the ing care 

smaller situations, and that the effects do not jus- 

tify the outlay. To which 20th replies that it is in- 
sisting on sound for the benefit of the theatres ANOTHER WARNING 

rather than its own since four-track sound materially ■ — ^ 

adds to the enjoyment of widescreen productions. Eye— Infection Danger In Theatres 

Aspect ratios, which changed with confusing ra- Re-Using 3-D Specs 

pidity earlier in The year, settled down gradually, 

with studios leaving projection choice up to exhibs, Philadelphia. 

, *«-»“ ° £ 3 -p ?r s rrr 

able to take their pick from that ratio down. In the Rattan ToJrena of the PeL$ 
early stages of the wtdescreen ‘'revolution,” many va„i^ AssoSon for^ the B*?nd 

theatres would widescreen features made in the vania ASS0Ciatl0n lor ine 

conventional ratio. The results were superficially Dr - Torrens, who .nets as con- 
impressive, providing one didn’t mind seeing per- sultant for the association’s Pre- 
formers with half their heads cut off vention of Blindness Department, 

The rediscovery of the widescreen— the industry asSailed the practice of “some the- 
has been playing around with it almost from its in- atre owners and managers,” who 
ception and has known about Prof. Henri Chretien’s rewUSe the 3_D glasses. “Too many 
CinemaScope anamorphic lens for almost a quarter comn1unicab l e eye diseases such as 
of a century— has brought, about profound changes oonjdnctivitis or pink eye can be 
not so much in the actual presentation of films as in trart smitted m this manner, u r. 

the thinking of the entire business. The air is per- Torrens declared. 

. vaded by an exciting sense of change and improve- D r - Torrens emphasized that he 
ment. No one wants to agree on actual standards was n °L against the use of the 
since no one wants to freeze progress. Inventors are glasses. “What we are going to 
still popping out of the woodwork and, hardpressed eliminate is the placing of a re- 
as it is for something new to catch the. public’s fancy ceptacle at the theatre exit so that 
the industry is happy to lend them an ear with costs P at ro n s can leave their glasses in 


Marilyn Monroe, “All-American,” cut production skeds. 

loaned to RKO for “Susan Slept Most worried and concerned of all were the small 
Here;”. Marcia Henderson starred theatres which felt that not only were, they being' 
in “Back to God’s Country,” asked to shoulder an unreasonably high equipment 
“Web,” to .Metro for “All I De- bill via screens, sound and lenses, but also that some 
sire;” Barbara Rush, “Outer °f the. majors were implementing a long-feared 
Space,” "Taza, Son of Chochisd;” streamlining policy, i.e., a policy of basing their cx- 
Suzan Ball, “East of Sumatra,” pectntions primarily on the limited number of top- 
“City Beneath the Sea;” Gregg ..grossing situations around the country. 

Palmer, “All-American;” .Buddy 1 ^ — 5—. 

Hackett, “Walking My Baby Back i— - Mimir as Dynamic Job / 

Home ” “Fireman Save My Chikh” Kingpin of all widescreen developments during 

A ^ m f‘ Win * s of Ihe.llawk,” the year just. past was 20th and its pi-esident, H 

taenr>n^’ CatUle fl ° m th<S B ack Pi Skouras. Dynamje, imaginative and perhaps , a 
•Lagoon. little ruthless in his flnfpi’miriaiinn in htm/, u „ 

Home “Fireman Save My Child.;” Kingpin of all widescreen developments during 
Win * s of the. Hawk.” the year just.past was 20th and its president, H 
taennn^’ 031010 fl ° m th<S B ack Pi Skouras. Dynamje, imaginative and perhaps , a 
— oS ‘f aar i!f Uo ruthless in his determination to hypo the b o 

20th-Fox: Apart from Marilyn, Skouras pioneered CinemaScope with a single- 
M ^ Na J?? ara ’ loaned for nnndcdness that roused the rest of the industry into 
The Mon Is Blue, attracted at- various degrees of admiration and concern. V 
tention, followed with “We Be- The comoanv sunk millionc l'nfn infarhafinnnl 

iawuo uteti-w ui aumirauon ana concern. 

The company sunk millions into international com- . 

to Love,” Robert Wagner 

reZe f Ws SeV hre a .l yearS a flna “ y 'i , In retu ™‘ » ™ down a 

Photoplav mae? No Cl ? pp .? d ln *, t . o t ' , e ™nditions under which its CinemaScopers 

i notoplay mags No. 1 popularity could be shown. Exhibs didn’t have much choice 

a secondard consideration. these . catchalls for later use of 

" ‘ yr. r~r — ^ = — -tt- other customers.” 

Limmicks Not Enough | 

And' yet, the reali$ts are ready with a word of 
lyarning. Gadgets, they say, are not enough. They 
cite 3-D as an example. Stcrcopix came on big 
at the start of the year, with “Bwana Devil,” fol- 
lowed by the top-grossing “House of Wax” from 

XX.IVA uic icai^is are reaay with a word of rpn a . ltIV i. 

lyarning. Gadgets, they say, are not enough. They . 1UA DlfeCtOYS ffleCl 
cite 3-D as an example. Stcrcopix came on big 

at the start of the year, with “Bwana Devi? ” fof- Mid-winter meeting of the cxec- 
lowed by the top-grossing “House of Wax”’ from utive cortimit tce arid the board or 
Warners. Then the public scorned to tire of the in- f rectors of Theatre .Owners of 
consequential 3-D efforts rushed out by Hollvwood Ameri( ? a will be held in Waslung- 
Ihousands of theatres that had equipped themselves ^ on ’ *I an * 31 to Feb. 2. 
for depth pix, bemoaned the fact that their lifespan Scheduled for airing , are the 
seemed to be so short. Viewer sales, which had most recent developments in ar- 
skyrocketed, dropped. bitration, the 16m antitrust suit, 

■ As 19 53 came to an end, 3-D seemed to get a new subscription TV, the question of 
lease on life with a new crop of depthies, made with compulsory use of stereophonic 
more technical and artistic care. sound for CinemaScope pix, film 

In any case, the industry made up its mind to one rentals, and the Federal 209c ad” 
thing.: The public wants and welcomes anything missions tax, 

Jib'Ll 11 m °ri on Pitres.. Basically, however, it de* A. Julian Brylawski, TOA v.p.» 
ands quality ofi content. And that is a truth which is chairman of the host committee. 

has had to face f ? om the first day it Alfred Starr, exec committee and 
ranked a camera arid went into the business of board of directors topper, will P re ' 
providing entertainment for the masses. side at the sessidns. 

Lucius Beebe 

«r«lnt »day, January 6, 1954 

RealFrontier Feudin’ 

In Effete Nevada 


Virginia City, Nev. 

The long tradition of feuds, bad feeling, lawsuits, fist- 
fighting, gunfire, resignations from public office, defalca- 
t ons and geneological exchanges between long established 
eighbors which has been part of life in the West’s least 
n Inhibited ghost town since the days of 

the silver kings maintained its status 
this past summer throughout the ex- 
ploitation of the most thumping bo- 
nanza of tourists at any time in Ne- 
vada history. 

It is notable that Senator William 
M. Stewart, a Yale man with the finest 
beard west of the Missouri, in the ’60s 
became the town’s first millionaire, 
not from the riches of the Comstock 
Lode, but. from the practice„of law- 
defending and prosecuting the suits 
which arose among the prospecting 
miners. From that time to this civic 
bad feeling has been a constanct fac- 
tor in the intra mural relationships of this bouncing shrine 

of Western individualism. . 

Largely innocent of the riptides of sometimes hysterical 
hatred which seethed beneath the surface of C Street, 
Virginia’s main drag, the greatest influx of tourists in 
the annals of northern Nevada overflowed its saloons, 
gaming parlors, hotels, restaurants and historical shrines. 
Melodeons dating from the days of Adolph Sutro wheezed 
and roared and snarled far into, the Navada night. Whisky 
Salesmen conducted campaigns reminiscent of the tech- 
nique of Broadway's champagne salesmen of the Manny 
Chappelle era for the favors of local taverners. The Terri- 
torial Enterprise flung itself into editorial sarabands and 
partisan skirmishes with banshee screeches reminiscent of 
the time when Mark Twain was' the enfant terrible of its 
city stall and Joe Goodman was blasting the daylights out 
of rival publishers with a Colt’s Navy revolver. 

The season of arrests and charges got off to a flying start 
when Florence Edwards, proprietor of the Silver Dollar 
Hotel and a local institution of heroic proportions, caused 
the jailing of the lady proprietor of a rival hostel just 
across the street where a type of syncopated music, de- 
scribed by Mrs. Edwards as “bo-peep” was played by ener- 
getic enthusiasts into what the formal complaint described 
as “the wee hours.” From a cell boasting cut flowers and 
curtains ifi the window in Storey County jail, Mrs: Estelle 
d’Anna countered that her orchestra never heard of bo- 
peep but were practitioners of esthetic measures beyond 
Mrs. Edwards’ comprehension known as “de-boop.” After 
a restful weekend in the ’gow, away from her more or 
less embattled, patrons, some of whom were in the habit of 
riding, motorcycles into the bar, Mrs. d’Anna returned 
to her place of business and no more was heard of the 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 



Hopalong Colony Cuisine 

Shortly thereafter the chef of the Comstock House, 
Virginia City’s resort of luxury and fashion where lamb- 
chops are listed on the menu at $4.50 and a Colony decorum 
usually obtains, filed charges against the Sheriff of Storey 
County demanding his ouster instanter on the grounds that 
he had refused a petition to halt traffic in a section of town 
while a motorcade, of sports car enthusiasts visited the 
restaurant. The charges ‘died of legal malnutrition but 
touched off a chain reaction of screaming and dementia 
when the conservative and influential Oakland Tribune 
sent staff reporter Bill Fiset up to do a series on conditions 
in the Comstock. 

The Tribune is owned by the grand old man of Cali- 
fornia Republicanism, Joseph Know-land, whose son Wil- 
liam F. Knowland is majority leader on the floor of the 
Senate in Washington. Several staffers and executives of 
The ^Tribune are graduates of The Territorial Enterprise 
or otherwise Virginia City fans, but notwithstanding the 
veneration in wiiich the paper is held throughout Western 
Nevada, an clement arose in Virginia City crying “un- 
favorable publicity” and demanding that The Tribune be 
banned on local newsstands. Needless to say, sales boomed, 
especially after the most hysterical custodian of the Com- 
stock’s moral tone attempted physical measures against 
the paper's salesmen and representatives. 

During the height of the musical comedy excursions the 
chef who had attempted the removal of the Sheriff fled 
town m a snowstorm of debts and bad cheques and Sheriff 
Jacobsen was confronted with the agreeable duty of post- 
hg lnm as wanted by justice. 

Needless to detail, these tumults and alarms received a 
csoundmg press in Reno, San Francisco. Sacramento and 
jacent communities and the crush of tourist trade in 
Virginia City landmarks as The Delta, the 
Old Washoe Club, Sazarac and Old Capitol bc- 
-Q, C . ■ mos t impenetrable on! weekends. From Piper’s 
ren '-r ! 1<)w a muSG °m, Mrs. Emmie Penz, its custodian, 
a. J !] mos t as many customers as in the days wben 
of ii e . i ' ba an ^ J° e Jefferson trod the hallowed boards 
f.„ ■ , V a ,° ( ] stage. St. Mary’s-in-the-Mountains, the. town’s 
7 = ..... C ; 'tholic shrine, received its first coat of paint in 
Bon-uv**’ aric * ® u ^ a lo Bill Shelter, proprietor of the Big 
s ‘i, *?. 3 sor t Pf supermarket of. tourist knick-knacks, ore 
limn U ; ns and * nd ian goods, was forced to recruit over- 
"J* * aIcs S»’ls in half dozen lots from Reno. 

of ,i£! a f ic cxam Ple of Virginia City’s free-w'heeling way 
nUt U , a:ncd U P whe n Chief of Police John Byrne, 

Slue? n,i. luw “ in we eany uuuis. v-me ui m*. 

Tearoom^ 3 j ec * nex ^ m orning in the doorjamb of Greer’s 
Vireinh Au another smashed a window in Olive Latte’s 
to seo ub Jus t as the proprietor poked her head out 
Call t0 ^ era ^ y » What all the shooting was about, 
of cnm,„ bcfore the next meeting of Storey County’s board 
%rne \i '? 10 ? Grs . to ex P la in his marksmanship, Chief 
"lien nr. 3 !’- asxe( ^ if by any chance he ever took a drink 
nglit duty. “What else is there to do> since we 

8irls?” asked the chief, and the matter was 
promptly dropped, 

• ° th f r com mentary on the Virginia City way was fur- 
mshed one week recently wben Charles Clegg, fearless 

tnri t oi r ^ f 4 T1 i e ^ err i! orial Enterprise, ran a blazing edi- 
torial against toleration of hot rodders in town upon any 

a Jnel 1, Three days later he bought himself an 
super-sports Jaguar with a speedometer 
U E A 0 tn.p.h. ‘.‘ft shows an open mind,” he 
explained. Also it adds a dimension to my conversation, 
i am told that Jaguars are, in the vernacular, 'ecstatically 

gcur^v • 

rri/ n ^ 0 I iarno1 - 1 a ffaiirs of the community it reports,, 

ine Enterprise itself is enjoying a bonanza of eye-popping 
proportions, Finding the job printer who for years had 
produced its slender editions unequal to a new prosperity, 
its proprietors this summer built themselves a costly new 
printing plant behind the historic Enterprise Building in G 
Street with its memories of Mark Twain and Dan De Quille 
and is running weekly print orders of 6,000 papers, just 20 
times the entire population of the community, in which it 
is published. Its columns bulging prosperously with na- 
tional advertising, its editorial columns widely reprinted 
throughout the West, the paper is enjoying a prestige com- 
parable to that in which it was held in the Comstock’s great 
days when it was the most influential and richest news- 
paper property between Chicago and the Coast. 

Quite obviously Northern Nevada isn't achieving the 
-spotlight whiclTTEs“extravagant pressageritry, shrewd show- 
manship and gaudy spending has centered ort Las Vegas, 
^ > Iif no 18n ^ ^uu^Plaiuiufi* Things are really good there 
and there is an undercurrent of confidence in Reno’s more 
conservative foundations and background which isn’t alto- 
gether impressed .with the permanence of Las Vegas and 
its flamboyant nightlife. 

And whatever business Reno gets overflow's into its his- 
tone suburb on the side of Sun Mountain. Virginia City 
this summer has been crawling with names that make 
n f ws , J j ® ca ^ s wbo were once impressed with the presence 
of celebrities now don’t bat a n° eyelash to find themselves 
standing in The Delta beside Cole Porter or stumbling over 
C Street s ancient board sidewalks with Ellen Mackay 
Berlin.. Nationally known writers such as Ward More- 
house and Stanton Delaplane make a point of visiting Vir- 
ginia City not once but several times a year and at least 
three documentary films detailing its historic background 
are in process of manufacture. A Hollywood corporation 
called Bonanza Productions, under the guidance 6f:Sani S. 
Taylor, is planning a series of commercial’ films aimed at 
TV framed in the economy of The TCrri torial Enterprise" 

and drawing story material from its old files. 

Never a dull moment in Virginia City, 

Post Mortems Of 1953 


f Rhymes Out of the B' Way Nursery 
1 For Variety's . 48f)i Anniversary 

No truer words was ever said ■ — - 

Than Charlie Dressen's: “The Giants is dead.” 

Mexico; where the climate’s dryer, 

Has coffee, sugar and O'Dwyer. 

In no way was the trotting. scandal 
Harmful to the trotting handle. 

Who cheers ’em up when they’re sad and lonely? 

Joe E. Lewis, the One and Only, 

Who said: “In Las Vegas they’ll soon contrive. 

“A schoolhouse called P. S. 6 to 5.” 

A proverbial song called: “Rags to Riches” 

Had me in the proverbial stitches; r 

And of “Doggie in the Window." which did all right, 

I'd say its bark was worse than its bite. 

LaRosa, a singer of great ability, • 

Is trying to find his Lo'st Humility. 

“Dial M for Murder** was a natch; 

“The Seven Year Itch” made lots of scratch; 

“The Frogs of Spring,” it seems, evoked 
Few' critics’ plaudits, so it croaked. 

But R. and H.’s “Me and Juliet” 

Was also panned, so there's no rule yet. 

As for “The S. G. Cadillac,” 

Of Gilt-edged wit, it had a lack. . 

And — put this down as quite an oddity— 

Tea was the theatre’s top commodity. 

The N. J. voters O, K.’d Bingo. 

I love the Works of Colonel Stingo. 

Sources close to Senator Joe 

Sav Little Red Riding Hood’s bound to go. 

The Songsmiths’ Cause seems most deserving— 

So where’s your contribution, Irving? 

I liked her singing and I liked his squibs — 

Referring to Georgia and Wolcott Gibbs. 

Things at the Music Hall were so sunny, 

They paid my sal’ry and still made money. 

The moppets mopped up with a eoupla clicks. 

It. 'snowc.d all day on November 6. 

“From Here to Eternity” made a pile; 

“The Robe” kept the Roxy warm quite a while. 

The TV “Lear” was a royal bore. 

Frankie and Ava ain’t lovers no more. 

Better for headaches than a bromo, 

The dulcet tones of Perry Como. 

Fred Allen, who used to poke such fun 
At giveaway shows, is running one. 

As airy as Central and Prospect Parks: 

Milton Berle and Groucho Marx. 

I always stop and I always go 

For the “Invitation to Learning" show. 

Of cracks-on-wax, my special pet 
Was “St. George and the Dragonet.’* 

That banks may soon pay 3% 

Should interest, the provident. 

Robert W’agner will run the town. 

The Center Theatre is coming down. 

My feet are cold, my hands are clammy, 

I wish that I were, in Miami '1 

Instead of opening the door 
Of foolish, freezing ’54! 


The Man Who Speaks for His Dinner 
Suffers Many Inconveniences— But 
There Are Compensations, Too! 


Bennett Cerf 

The lecture circuit is a pleasant, ego-salving, and 
lucrative routine for people . who. like. to. talk, in public—, 
and those who don’t soon fall by the wayside— but it’s far 
from the. gold mine some would-be spielers picture it to be. 

Sure, a successful lecturer drags 
down what sounds like a yery impres- 
sive fee— especially to the group that 
is paying it — for £ single hour on the 
podium, but the net, unfortunately, 
isn’t even close to the figure quoted. 

In the first place, lecture bureaus 
extract an unholy commission— up to 
50% when they pay all the traveling 
and living expenses, a third when the 
-lecturer pays them' himself; One ob"-' 
noxious highbinder, prominent— -or 
should I say notorious— in the racket 
asks even more than that when he 
feels he can get away With it. Unless 
several dates have been set up within a short distance of 
one another, and on consecutive days, it can be readily 
seen that if you're footing your own bills, a large part of 
the take is dribbled away in fares, hotel bills, and food and 

In the second place, lectures in any but the biggest 
cities involve inferior accommodations, . arrivals and de- 
partures at unbelievably inconvenient hours, and travel 
over bad roadbeds in r.attly, obsolete equipment. Ever rid- 
den the Pennsy from St. Louis to Columbus? Or the Soo 
Line from Chicago to Duluth? If not, don’t tempt fate! 

In the third place, a lecturer’s work does not begin when 
he strides out before his audience, but the very minute he: 
hits town. He may have looked forward to a whole day in 
Squeedunk as just the place to hole up in his hotel, safe 
from interruptions, and finish that manuscript he’s been 
carting around in his valise for the past week. Perish the 
.thought.’ . .A committee of welcome. pounces upon. ..him -as 
he descends from the plane or Pullman, and whisks him 
off, in turn, to be interviewed over the radio by the. local 
Mary Margaret McBride, photographed for the high school 
monthly, guided ' through all four floors of the state's 
largest hairpin factory, and exposed to a pageant depicting 
the landing of the Pilgrims by students of the seventh 
grade performed for the business men's luncheon club. 

Then, of epurse, there's the dinner preceding the lecture 
and the reception that follows I'm convinced the same 
little group follows me from town to town. The rich 
hostess, who makes up the forum's deficit each year and 
therefore gets, the privilege of entertaining • all ... visiting 
lions— surely this is the selfsame Mrs. Fluegelheimer to 
whom I thought. I had waved a fond farewell at the pre- 
ceding stop? No, she’s tellmg jne again how she herself 
has written a jolly little juvenile that simply convulsed 
her own grandchildren. “Why don’t you submit it to us?” 

I ask 'with a fine show of enthusiasm, and she answers— 
as always. “I did— but you nasty people sent it right back!” 

And there's the wispy local' poet again — the one who's 
so eager to know what Truman Capote is really like. 
And the book reviewer of the Weekly Sentinel whose re^ 
quests, for a. free copy of a $30 art folio were so rudely 
ignored by our publicity department. And' the com- 
munity tycoon who hasn't read a book in 30 years and 
doesn t care who knows it. i“lt was all those literary 
fellers in the New Deal who got this country into its 
present fix."j 

The Whvfore of It All 

Why. then, do knowing folks like John Mason Browm, 
Quentin Reynolds. Eleanor Roosevelt. Emily Kimbrough. 
Norman Cousins, et al., resolutely hit the lecture trail 
every season? Because the compensations far outweigh 
the drawbacks I have enumerated. There’s the oppor- 
tunity for seeing the real America— and the wonderful 
people w,ho inhabit it. Even the Mrs. Fluegelheimers warm 
up as the day progresses, and turn out to be sympathetic, 
friendly souls, eager to imbibe a little innocent “culture.” 
and proud of their local communities. The lengths to 
which they will go to make a stranger comfortable are 
often fantastic. 

There’s the vanity' angle, too — the speaker’s satisfaction 
in knowing that this is strictly a one man show , and that 
everybody in the audience is there just to hear inn). The 
lecturer who denies that this gives him a basic kick is lying 
in his teeth. Finally, there’s the never dimming satisfac- 
tion of 'speaking to the occasional college audiences — 
anywhere from 2-12.000 students (attending voluntarily 
and on their own time>. who are right on the ball every 
minute of the way, ready to laugh at your better sallies, 
sure to pop up with something provocative and startling 
in that question period. Anybody who hasn’t yet experi- 
enced the thrill of earning a solid, heart-warming burst of 
laughter from a tough, highly critical college audience has 
something mighty exciting to look forward to! 

Experienced lecturers shy instinctively from having 
wives or intimate friends attend their lectures. There's 
nothing like a beady-eyed wife to take the starch out of a 
auditprium” story when you know she’s heard you tell it at. 
least 50 times before. 

One lecturer was so adamant about excluding his wife 
from- his' lecture series that she secretly visited his book- 
ing agent and signed him up at twice his regular fee 
(she owns about six knitting mills and could afford tc 
indulge herself). The husband turned up. somewha*. 
mystified, ai the address given him and' found his wife 
dressed to the. teeth, awaiting him. in solitary- grandeui 
with her arms folded. "You’ve been paid to do your, stuff; 
she commanded. “Give!” The husband, no slouch he! ap- 
preciated the humor of the situation, spoke eloquently and 
at length, concluding, “Ladies and gentlemen: unless these 
tired eyes of mine deceive me, I spy my wife in this dis- 
tinguished audience. If I’m correct, it’s the first time in 
12 years she’s allowed me to get a word in edgewise. I 
thank you.” 

The wife applauded vigorously. _As she explained latqr, 
“I liked the lecturish look in his eyes!” 


Forty-eighth J^SrIETy Anniversary 

Wednesday,' January 6, 1954, 

There’s No Substitute For Plenty 

Curtailing Production and Freezing Out Theatres Is a Goofy Way 1 

Re-awaken Interest in Moving Pictures 

“What’s wrong with the movies?” standard cameras as well as by the 4* 
admits of a clear-cut and obvious Cinemascope method, or to refuse 
answer: Fewer people are attend- to make conventional prints avail- 
ing the theatres than formerly, able when the pictures are so pho- 

What to do tographed, is consistent only with 
.. about- this i is i a a purpose to freeze out the thea- 
timely subject , tres which are not adapted to wide- 
for ^ ebate * . , i j screen or stereophonic installa- 
A , ' v I * 1 tions, including driveins. 
agree that im- To appreciate the extent of the 
pinch one must bear in mind that 
* h ® P'° d ~™,i one major film company has an- 
a i£ rI T^, re ,hii Bounced that hereafter it will pro- 


Vet Story EditornReel* Off A Rich Fountainhead 

At Yet Untapped 


Qri J ffiic mvuuvvu uiat il^icaiici IV win piu- 

t ■ vpHIv 'hi- duce only Cinemascope pictures. 

1 veiny ue All tintnna nf ttin ntViorc T 

Abram F. Myers 


also are important and, certainly. 

lieve is^ being A 11 but one of the others, I believe, 
accomplished 6 have announced that they will 
New°and inter- make s° me pictures by that proc- 
esting methods ess ' The ann 9 unce d titles indicate 

tb&'Tnajdf^atffactibns wiin>tr 
. * ■ ’ in Cinemascope, i merely repeat 

we have a surfeit of these. But W hat everybody knows when -I say 
most important of all is a high in- that without access to the top 
dustry morale and this includes the grossing pictures no theatre can 

_ 1 nnnrn rtn SUrVlVC. 

elements of confidence, courage 
and a willingness to cooperate 
wholeheartedly in a great cam- 

Givc The Public A Break | 

Let us forget the exhibitor for a 

* Chairman of the Board of Di- 
rectors and General Counsel, Al- 
lied States Association of Mi 'ion 
Picture Exhibitors . 

^ ' 

paign to bring people back, into j foment and turn our attention to 
the theatres. i bis patrons. If the movies are to 

This campaign cannot be success- retain their hold on the American 
ful,.v carried oil b y W W 

ment or interest in the industry. It should be denied the privilege of 
calls for the enthusiastic coopera- seeing the best pictures. And yet 
tion, and for the utmost exertions, i4 « now- seriously proposed, not 
of every man and woman now en- °P ,, u > thousands of: theatres, 
gaged in the business. Anyone Who i ■ all be frozen out. but that their 
thinks that showmanship resides 1 Patrons shall be relegated, to tele- 
only in New York and Hollywood -J’lsipn as their only means of en- 
simply has not associated w T ith ex- tertainment. 

Jiibitors v .- But: in order, to generate .... It is idle to suppose that the at- 
the necessary* degree of enthusiasm ' tendance potential can be realized 
every exhibitor must feel, not ^ by reducing the number of the- 
merely that he is a part of the mo- j atres. Millions of moviegoers are 
tion picture industry', but a wel- dependent on their neighborhood 
come and necessary part, and that ' or local theatres, or on driveins, 
other elements in the business are ; for motion picture entertainment' 
truly interested in working with They cannot, for a variety of rea- 
Lira and are not planning to ex- sons, be attracted to the metropoli- 
clude him from it. tan key runs. While like their big- 

Curtailing the production of city cousins they, too, have become 
films and freezing out the small ex- , choosy, they are as loyal a class of 
hibitors is a goofy way to. re- customers as the industry has. They 
awaken interest in the movies and also want to see the best pictures 
stimulate theatre attendance. If , and in any sane view of the matter 
the trend in that direction con- they should have the opportunity 
tinues it will prove as futile a . to do so. 

means of '‘saving the movies” as There is legal justification for 
the pig-killing program was in aid- holding back a subsequent-run the- 
ing the farmers. The farmers w ere atre for a reasonable time in order 
spared the consequences of that to protect the prior run. Even then 
folly by huge Government subsi- it must be shown that the competi- 
dies. No one in his right mindl sup- tion between the two theatres is 
poses that Congress now* will ap- substantial. In recent, years the 
propriate money to reward the film distributors have come to recog- 
companies for pictures they do not nize that the competitive factors as 
make or refuse to sell. between different runs and. par- 

If-4— have- seomed-a -little - shrill ticularlv. different classes of the- 
in recent utterances on this subr atres has been greatly exaggerated, 
ject. I answer that my vehemence In seeking a faster playoff they 
was in proportion to the menace to have voluntarily reduced the clear- 
my clients. When men in high . ance in, many such situation, there- ) 
places speak glibly of eliminating ’ ' — — 

10.000 theatres. I know whose the- . 
atres they mean. But even if my j 
clients were not threatened with 

imminent destruction by. this sud- 
den passion for fewer pictures and • 
fewer theatres. I still would be 
opposed to the trend because it is 
essentially unsound and contrary 
to the American concept of an 
economy of abundance,. 

Starving The Theatres 

The trend toward contraction 
and exclusion got under way be- 
fore Cinemascope or even 3D ap- 
peared on the scene. Exhibitors 
have been complaining of what 
seemed to be a systematic reduc- 
tion in the . number of releases 
since World War II. Recent inno- 
vations in production and exhibi- 
tion, requiring the installation of 
sometimes scarce and always ex- 
pensive equipment, have made the 
condition acute. 

At this point I must explain that 
If the independent exhibitors were 
merely the incidental victims of 
a march of progress with which 
they could not keep in step, their 
complaints might excite sympathy 
but would npt carry conviction. 

The relentless reduction in the 
number of releases in all media — 
conventional, 3D and Cinema.Scope 
—cannot be attributed to techno- 
logical advances. A refusal to sup- 
ply prints with a single (optical) 
soundtrack to theatres that cannot 
afford stereophonic installations il- 
lustrates a state of mind, not a 
mechanical problem. And to re- 
fuse to photograph plays with 


1300 20th Ave. 

San Francisco Calif. 

by recognizing that the actual coitk 
petition between the different 
classes of theatres was not impor- 

In the cases that have been 
brought to my attention in the 
heated controversy of the past few 
weeks, I have noted very few where 
the preceding run, which is giving. 
“The Robe” the full CinemaScopic. 
treatment, could have been af- 
fected seriously, if at all, by per- 
mitting the subsequent-run or 
small town theatre to exhibit the 
picture minus stereophonic sound, 
or on whatever screen had been 
installed therein, or, for that mat- 
ter, from a standard print on a 
conventional screen. 

Neither can I see wherein the 
distributor would be hurt by per-; 
mitting the smaller theatres to 
show Cinemascope pictures in 
whatever way they can. Most of the 
mechanical objections that have 
been offered have already vanished 
into thin air. 

When it comes to exhibition on 
a standard size screeji in a theatre 
or drivein where large screen in- 
stallation is impossible, I cannot 
see wherein that treatment will 
hurt the picture. Certainly it Has 
not handicapped “From Here to 
Eternity.” During this remarkable 
run some very notable pictures 
have bowed in and bowed out of 
the local scene, 

I cannot emphasize too strongly 
that I am not attempting to dis- 
continued on page 59) 


There was a period during the 
lush and plush days of Hollywood 
when studios displayed a lively in- 
terest in the acquisition of story 

Every major, studio and home 
office maintained a sharp lookout 
for scoops over its rivals. Not only 
were they able to snatch galley- 
proofs far ahead of actual publica- 
tion date, but frequently installed 
a pipeline direct to t he author’s 
mind. The studios even made it 
their business to be acquainted 
with the works in progress - Tonig 
before the manuscripts went to the 
publishers. The mere announce- 
ment that a stage producer had 
optioned a new play was a signal 
for the enterprising story editors 
to cajole the author’s* agent into a 
glimpse at the script. The perspi- 
cacious editors kept a ceaseless 
vigil on the progress of the play. 
They followed it out of town rather 
than risk competition at the subse- 
quent opening on Broadway. 

At this writing, the home office 
scou ts are rarely to be found at 
opening nights in their official ca- 
pacity; much less at the out-of- 
town tryouts. There are plays 
which have had long, extensive 
runs oh Broadway as well as suc- 
cessful road tours but which were 
greeted by the film producers with 
a silence long, measured and elo- 

It was only a few years ago, B.T. 
(before television) that Broadway 
siphoned almost every stage ex- 
hibit into the Hollywood ranks, 
Today, Pulitzer winners as well as 
New York Critics’ Award selectees 
receive no recognition from the 
film capital. Here and there, of 
course, one or two acknowledged 
stage, hits are actually snapped up 
for the films, but nothing like the 
competitive flair of yesteryear. 

The only published volumes that 
have a chance for serious consid- 
eration, are those which lend 
themselves currently to the wide 
screen; such as the so-called 
swashbuckling costume affairs, sci- 
ence, fiction, western and biblical 
subjects. Even then, it takes con- 
siderable - time before the studio 
finally seals a compact for its' pur- 
chase. As for “original” stories, 
in spite of the fact that employ- 
ment is at its lowest ebb among 
the screenwriters, they seem no 
longer interested in submitting 
original material. 

A survey of the low budget films 
will reveal that their producers 


sumintr In ShaW^r*. Cmiolonus for the Phoenix 'rheiure, Xetv York. Directed by John Houseman, 

have bedevilled the public with a 
thousand variations of the Jesse 
James saga; the doublet and hose 
and . flashing swordplay derived 
from the Robin Hood legend; the 
picaresque characters created by 
Dumas; the monkeyshines front the 
Arabian Nights Entertainment; the 
ancient gun, Indian and horseplay 
business of the west, and those 
lacklustre and unimaginative Mar- 
tian exhibits. 

Here and there, the majors have 
made thdir own forays into the 
Arthurian and rocket-to-the-moon 
and Bagdad territories. Notwith- 
standing these achievements, the 
general atmosphere regarding the 
overall story situation is less than 
inspiring. Perhaps it can be laid 
chiefly to curtailed production, the 
continual remakes and the dust- 
ing off of the unproduced proper- 
ties from the shelves. There is ac- 
tually no enthusiasm nor excite- 
ment regarding the acquirement of 
new properties. 

Without ransacking the plots of 
those works that ate in public do- 
main, there are literally dozens of 
authors of our generation as well 
as the last, whose eminent offer- 
ings have scarcely been touched, 
many not at all. It might prove a 
windfall for the studios to explore 
these possibilities. 

Specifically, the works of Thomas 
Mann should be thoroughly re- 
examined. It is beyond me how 
anybody r could "overlook' “The 
Magic Mountain” or his “Joseph” 
books; the lifetime writings of 
Sherwood Anderson with special 
emphasis On his short story “I 
Want to Know Why ” the offerings 
of James Stevens. Somewhere in 
the 40-odd volumes of Eliot Paul, 
you’ll surely find something appro- 
priate for the screen. The works 
of Aldous Huxley have scarcely 
been tapped. There are several 
volumes by D. H. Lawrence whicn 
should appeal to the producers; 
not all of his writings are on the 
order of “Lady Chatterley’s Lover ” 
No one has done anything with the 
marvelous fantasies of Lord Duns- 
any. I have yet to find any of 
Joyce Carey’s works gobbled up 
for the screen. A few.of the books 
of John Dos : Passos should have 
long ago been coveted by the pro- 
ducers, for example his Manhattan 
Transfer which reads like a screen- 
play. What about Sholem Aleichem 
who ranks with the literary im- 
mortals? There is pure gold to be 
found in many of the works of 
Paul Green, Christopher Isher- 
wood, Andre Malreaux. As for the 
literary elders of the past genera- 
tion, the works of George Moore, 
Anatole France, George Gissing, 
Gerhardt Hauptmann, Romaine 
Rolland, Frank R. Stockton . and 
many, many others whose names I 
will supply on demand. 

Let it no longer be said that 
there is a dearth of available ma- 

I My Life as Sam Katzman 



First I must explain that I am 
a dentist who writes on the side, 
and vice versa. In other words, 
beside practicing dentistry I sell 
occasional articles to magazines 
and contribute at times to televi- 
sion shows. But that isn’t what 
giyes nle trouble. It’s my name. 

A couple of years ago when a 
piece of mine appeared in a maga- 
zine I read this news item in one 
of the Hollywood trade; papers: 

“Sam Katzman’s article “Laugh- 
ter by the Yard” appears in this 
week’s Collier’s. Sam Katzman had 
been a writer for Eddie Cantor for 
five years.” 

Frankly, I did not begrudge pro- 
ducer Sam Katzman the mention in 
a trade paper, but he really didn't 
need it. That very same daily had 
an item about what pictures he was 
shooting, another item about what 
actors he was hiring, and a news 
release discussing his distribution 
arrangements. Sam Katzman need- 
ed the extra publicity like TV 
films need married couples. - 

When I called the show business 
(Continued on page 40) 

JAN. 1 8 — First CinemaScope anamorphic lenses flown to 20th’s studios. 

JAN. 26— 20th executives view preliminary CinemaScope test reels. 

JAN. 28 — 20th announces “The Robe” will be first production in CinemaScope. 

FEB. 2 -^ 20th adopts CinemaScope for all its productions. 

FEB. 23 — “The Robe” goes before the CinemaScope cameras. 

MAR. 18— First-demonstration of CinemaScope unanimously acclaimed by 
exhibitors, industry executives; technicians and world press. 

MAR. 18— Loew’s, Inc., announces M-G-M will produce in CinemaScope. 

APR. 24 — CinemaScope demonstrations start in New York, followed by 
showings in all principal cities of the world. 

MAY 12— 20th announces perfection of revolutionary single-film 4-track 
magnetic stereophonic sound system. 

JUNE 2— United Artists goes CinemaScope. 

JUNE 25— Walt Disney goes CinemaScope. 

AUG. 11— Industry and press hail first demonstration of CinemaScope 4-track • 
magnetic stereophonic sound system. 

SEPT. 16— Eight months after first CinemaScope tests, “The Rohe” has World 
Premiere Presentation at Roxy, New York. 

SEPT. 24-First week*of “The Robe” at Roxy grosses world record $264,428. 

OCT. 22— Canadian premiere of “The Robe.” 

OCT. 29— Columbia goes CinemaScope. 

NOV. 4 — Warner Bros, goes CinemaScope. 

NOV. 9 — “How to Marry a Millionaire,” second great CinemaScope production, 

starts breaking records across the country. 

NOV. 19— London premiere of “The. Robe.” 

NOV. 27— Rome and New Zealand premieres of “The Robe. 

p[( t 3 _ Paris premiere of “The Robe.” 

9 _ Australian premiere of “The Robe,” 

, Germany premiere of “The Robe.” 

, World Premiere of “Beneath the 12-Mile Reef” at Roxy, N. Y. 

, Mexico premiere of “The Robe.” 

, World Premiere of “King of the Khyber Rifles” at Rivoli, N.Y. 

. 84-theatre day and date Christmas holiday engagement of “The Robe 
starts ip New York City area. 

^ , v m ^ s , ✓ ^ 




Produced by Directed by 






Screen Play by F,om ,he novel by 


by Gina Kaus 


Forty-eighth • ptffe/ETY ’Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 

‘No Business Like 


MUSIC (8 Bars, Chorus, “There's No Busines s Like 
Show Business”— Fade.) 


There’s rip business like show business; A lot of words 
and music have been written about show business. Actors, 
singers, comedians— -all spend hours reminiscing about 
their profession — about the old days- — the great acts— 
the big names— the hardships and rewards. But what 
about the people in other businesses? The butcher, the 
salesman— the insurance: man— the truckdrivers or teach- 
ers? No one ever writes a song about them; Take the 
pushcart, peddler for instance. He has his heartaches arid 
thrills, too— his great moments of laughter arid . drama; 
Just Tike show people, he appears before the public. He 
does one-night stands. With his customers, he wants to 
be a hit., The pushcart business might have been as popu- 
lar as show business ; . if Irving Berlin had written a . 
song about it! 

MUSIC (Introduction to "There's No Business Like 
Shout Business.) 


: — (Puts on battered felt hat, bandana, large Italian mous- 
tache and: ancient cordurby coat. He brings pushcart on 
stage., loaded with fruits and vegetables,. paper bags, scales, 
etc.) (Sings.) 

There’s no business like the .pushcart business . 

Lika no business I know. 

Everything about it is appealing. 

Everyone a-like the pushcart -mam ' 

Nowhere else you get that kind of feelin’ 

When the cop’s arstealin’ 

That extra banan’! 

MUSIC ( Fade to background.) 

COMIC (Talking) ; 

Sun-ama-gyn! Whysa the cop always take-a the fruit 
from the push-arcart-a man?. He. don’ go in the theatre 
arid steaha the acter-^maybe he don’-a like ham! But the 
push-a . cart-a business is-a wonder /ul! Ail it takes is a 
little push— a. loud-a voice- 1 — and a big-a pull! A pushcart 
man .is riot-a made^-he’s arborn. It takes-a the talent to 
sell-a the corn. If you don’t believe me— ask Milton 
Berle!' f Sings.) 

There’s no people like-a pushcart people. 

They laugh when they are low. 

Yesterday they tell • you to. change your course, 

You'll wind up-a broke— with-a remorse; 

But next day you’ve hitched your wagon to a horse! 

Let’s go— make-a the dough! 

MUSIC (Fade to Background.) 

COMIC (Talking) v 

But-a makin’ the money isn’t everything. The push-a 
cart business gets in-a your blood. And it-a runs in the 
family too. Take-a my wife. I’ll never forget-a the day 
we met. We was : a both doin’ a one-night stand on the 
same-a corner. She was-a sellin' lima beans; I was-a 
sellin' corn. I told-a her then— we could-a make such 
beautiful suc-o-tash together. When ! met her, she was-a 
gorgeous peach. Now, she’s just an ol.d-a tomatoe! But 
what a family we got. They was-a bom to be peddlers— 
as a matter-of-fact, they was-a born in a pushcart! The 
first one we call-a Spiid— he was-a born between the Long 
Island and the Idaho potatoes. The next-a one, he’s-a 
bom right between the onions and the garlic. What a 
little stinker he turned out to be! And the third bambino 
... he was-a skinny like-a string bean. He had-a cauli- 
flower ears, a turnip nose, a head like a cabbage— arid 
he’s-a grow up to be a vegetable dinner! Instead Of a 
hat— he wears a poached egg An'-a let me see . * . next 
we had-a the triplets. We named them-a Carrot, a-Radish 
and a-Celery— because they come in bunches. The only 
thing about the push-a cart business I don’t-a like, is the 
Up and downs. Today, you’re up . . . a real high ciass^— 
tomorrow you're-a flat on your asparagras! 

MUSIC < Verse to “ No Business Like Show Business.”) 


The lettuce— the apples— the kids. and the cops, 

The windows that-a raise when you yell.. 

The headaches— the heartaches— the backaches — the flops. 

The money you lose on what you don't sell. 

The people that pinch what you have for sale. 

The license you buy to stay out of jail! 

There’s-a no business like the. pushcart business 
It’s either fast or slow 

It’s-a grand-a feeling when your name you see 
A-painted on your pushcart marquee . . . 

And they review your act in Variety! 

And you read what-a they say! 

MUSIC (Fade) 

COMIC (Takes copy of Variety from coat pocket and 
reads > 

PasquaU! A Soccoli With His Broccoli ! 

Tony Pasquali does a single and has ’em-a rollin’ with 
his pushcart. He's-a loaded! Most of his stuff is fresh 
and the customers, they went for it. However, some of his 
oldies laid a big egg plant.. His apples rieed-a polish and 
his berries are-a too blue— and-a not in good taste. But 
his mushrooms, they killed-a the' people- — they was-a poi- 
son! Standout was his. specialty number, “Potatoes are 
cheaper:”. He did a terrific selling job a hick the customers a 
ate it up. They asked for more. With-a the proper vehicle, 
Pasquali should go far. For a close, he displayed some-a 
fast footwork when* chased by the cops— and when his-a 
pushcart . turned over, he finished with a big smash! Right 
now. producers Rodgers. & Hamm erstcin are talking bush 
ness with-a him. Sa mRodgers and Irving Hammerstein, 
producers of fruits and vegetables, They think he’s-a 
cinch to get the push-cart trade. 

(Throws Variety Away and Sings) 

There's no business like the pushcart business. 
You’re always on the go. 

Everything about it is appealing. 

When you make the pushcart your career. 

Nowhere could you buy that happy feeling 
As you go wheeling throughout thb year! 

MUSIC <Fade to Nostalgic , . Scntiniental Background) 

' v ' comic ' •' • 

The pushcart business is-a great.. For 50 years I’ve 
been-a before the public. I’m-a eelebratiri’ my golden corn 
anniversary. Fifty years, of one-night stands— of Openings 
and closings— of-a work and-a grind— the long runs I had, 
A/ith the e.ops-a dose behind. '.It seems like yesterday— I 
_wa^-aj3]axin’-Jl^Q^-d;iy. . Pitkin aventie-j-n-t-he^niorning . . 
Flatbush for a matinee-! Fifty years of laughter .and-a 

tears . . . arid-a makin' change. But it takes more than 
wheels arid-muscle , . . fruits and-a vegetables arid scales 
to. make a cart. You’ve-a got to have it here— (Taps 
Breast ) —You ’ve-a got to push from the heart! I know 
them all— the biggest names . . . who reach-a the top . . , 
the big-a time— And the small-a ones, too . . . Who pooped 
out-a tryiri’ to make-a the climb! Look! across the, street 
• . . , It’s that old soft melon; man— Peddler Pete! And 
over there . . . isn’t that . ; .? Yes .. .. . it’s-a that; wonder- 
ful, sweet old man . . the one and only Garlic Sam! How 
he used to turn ’em away 

: MUSIC ( Intro to ‘‘You Gotta Start Off Each Day With a 


But what’s-a happened to the old bunch? Wherri have 
they gone? Schnozzola Jim-^what-a happened to him? Re- 
member how he used to come on? 

(Sings and Does Durante Impresh) 

You gotta start off each day with some fruit! (Speaks) 
California style! Stop the music! 

MUSIC ( Stops) 


Let me hear a flute solo!. A solo on the flute! 

MUSIC (Flute and Reeds Render Discordant Passage) 


That’s no flute solo! It sounds more like a flute salad! 

. I grit a million of ’em! I’m-a walking’ down the street with 
my pushcart of sailor oranges— navel, of course; And 
I’m yellin’ “Get your oranges ... 10 cents a bushel” And 
the first think I know, a truck backs into my pushcart of 
oranges. SOUND ( Crash!) 


Get your orange juice— 10 cents a glass! Get your 
orange jUice— 10 cents a glass! 

MUSIC ( Sock Cue : Last 24 Bars of Chorus "Show Busi- 
ness,”) • 


There’s no people like-a pushcart people 

The miles they push for dough! 

MUSIC (Fade.) 


That’s-a true! The peddler business is-a hard on the 
feet— but it takes-a the smile to sell folks riri the street; 
And 'sriirietimes a song helps the sale along. Remember 
String Bean Sam . . . and his-a string bean band! 

MUSIC (Intro to "Toot Toot Tootsie ”) 


I can see him now — a pushin’ along, singin’ his-a string 
bean song! ( Sings ala Jolsom) String, string beans a good 
buy! Come and give ’em a try! (Jump to last 16. bars.) 
Watch for the sale! A bring-a your pail! 

If you want a full bucket then you get it wholesale! 

Come and give 'em a try! String, string beans— a good buy! 

. ; music (Out .) . 


And there's that-a grand old gal — queen of the pushcart 
steppers! ; 

Soflna Tucker-r-the last-a of the red hot peppers! 

MUSIC ("Some of These Days”) 

COMIC (Sings) 

Some of these days, you’re gonna; miss iriy. melons! 

You’ll wish then you had bought what I was sellin’! 
You’re gonna miss my specials — you’re gonna miss my bar* 
• gains! . 

You’re gonna miss yorir big, fat, pushcart mama . , . one 
of these days! . 

MUSIC (Segue Back to Nostalgic Background) 


Ah ... that brings-a back memories . . . of all the great 
faces— and famous places; Mott street and Shubert Alley 
. . . Delaricey street and Officer O’Malley— the Bronx and 
Queens . . . and Brooklyn, too . : ... Remember that tenor 
from Tenth avenue? Mario Lantsmari? 

MUSIC ("Be My Love”) 

COMIC (Sings a la Mario Lanza) 

Buy from me-e-e- (vibrato) 

For no other can be-e-e-at (vibrato) 

My pri-i-i-ces! (vibrato) 

. MUSIC ( Out Sharply.) 


What, a yoice! He developed that style, a-singin’ while 
he’s-a pushin’ up the hill. Ezio Pinza,, he may-a sing 
deeper . . . but, Mario, his-a prices are cheaper. If you 
don ’a believe me— ask-a M-G-M — Mayer’s Gropery market! 
But say, here’s a one we can never forget! He’s a great 
oldtimer — and he’s-a not through yet. He’s gotta wonder- 
ful voice, and-a big heart. Look-a, they hang-a the $tar on 
his push-a-cart! It’s-a Mr. Show Business of the Peddler's 
Guild . . . Banjo Eyes . . . The only pushcart man what 
sclls-a pizza pies! 

MUSIC ("Makin’ Whoopee”). 

COMIC (Al la Eddie Cantor) 

A take-a the onion, and garlic too— 

A-saTPand pepper, tomatoes, too. . 

Melt the cheese in' . . ; that's the reason — you gotta pizza! 

MUSIC ( :Segue to Nostalgic Background.) . ’ 


In 50 years the times have changed. They say the 
push-a cart . . . ifs-a obsolete— (shakes head)— there’ll 
always be a push-a cart . . . wherever there’s a street. Why, 
look . . . right-a there . . . right up ahead . .. with his 
battered old. pushcart . . . it’s the daddy of them ail . . 
It’s-a peddler Ted. 

MUSIC ("When My Baby Smiles at Me”) 

COMIC (A la Ted Lewis) 

Is everybody happy? Laugh don’t mope . keep on 
smilin —buy- my cantaloupes 1 — they’re made with sunshine. 
The best in fruits and vegetables— come from this old 
pushcart of mine. The old days are gone . . . but they’ll 
neyer die. As long as there's a. youngster with a bit of 
the ham— there’ll always be a pushcart man. 

MUSIC (Sharp Cue ; Last 2A Bars of "Show Business “— 
Sock Finish to Finale J 

-- ;• ; t/ COMIC • • ' - 

There’s no people like pushcart people 
They come— -arid they . may go! 

But with a lot of push you can one day be, 

A vcg-e-table celebrity, 

And who knows, you’ll wind up owning A & P! 

(Pushing cart off) 

Let's go! Push for. the dough! 

MUSIC ( Up and Out.) 

11 J, P, McE VOY ========= = !l 

• I '• " * ' ' ' 1 • . * 

About this time every year I take off. on my annual 
scavenger hunt through the rubbish heaps of Broken 
Resolutions, mislaid Plans for Self-Improvement and aban- 
doried Lists headed with: Must Do, Must Remember, and 

pitiful admonitions from the failing 

r : — spirit to the weakening flesh: Must 

Try Again. 

■ Every year the sodden salvage :j s . 

about the same and the recov^able 
residue ghastly familiar. Moldering 
items like Improve Memory, Learn 
Spanish, Practice Banjo, glow evilly 
with phosphorescent decay. Hartlier 
projects— veteran carryovers from 
previous years that started . out so 
bravely— reappear with grueling regu- 
larity: Read Gilbbon’s “Decline and 
J. p. McEvov Fall of Roman Empire?’; Reduce 10 
Pounds; Cut Down Telephone Bills- 
More Patience Around the; House, ’ 

Toting up this tattered inventory 1 have consoled my- 
self year after year with the legend of the gallant frog 
in the well— how he climbed up three feet and slipped 
back two; but finally got out. Today, peering over the 
crumbling edge of my 59th year, the truth has just dawned 
on me : I have been kidding myself. I have been climbing 
up two feet and slipping back three and the only way I 
can possibly get out of this dark well of defeat is to slide 
oil through to China. 

Next New Year’s, when I am 60, w.hat will I find in the 
scrap heap of my good resolutions? Will I have Learned 
Spanish? Improved Memory? Reduced 10 Pounds? Prac- 
ticed Banjo? I pause for reply.; Sure enough, dear little 
Hope, so faithful, sq persuasive, so optimistic whispers: 
“Of course! Learn just five words of Spanish a day and’ in 
one year you will know nearly 2,000 words-r-tioicc the 
everyday vocabulary of a bartender in Havana, less the 

| ■ ; See!'.;. ■ ; "\ ' ■' 

“Your meriiory? Already it is improved. Look! You - 
have remembered where you left your Roth Memory 
Course. Start again. Memorize your first; five key 
words: Hat, Hen, Ham, Hare, Hill. Take your time. Visual- 
ize. Now associate things you wish to remember with 
these exaggerated images. Read Gibbon? (In your Hati 
See him there.) Learn Spanish? (Visualize a hen talk- 
ing Spanish. If she can do it, you can.) Now what can 
you associate with a big Ham? (You, playing the banjo, 
while thousands. cheer.) See how easy it is!” 

Dear whispering Hope! Already I feel better. Once 
more I will collect my dog-eared Spanish textbooks on my 
night table so I can utilize those precious minutes when I 
wake up refreshed, alert, eager. I don’t remember ever 
feeling that way, but I know I can if I just try hard 
enough. Ah! Here they are: ’’Spanish is a Cinch.” “You, 
Too, Can Learn Spanish— You Dope,” “Eat, Drink, Make 
Love in Spanish— the Blitz Method.” 

I must attack all niy other problems with the same 
cool logic, the same iron resolution. Rome was not built ^ 
in a day. (Memo: Read one page of Gibbon every night 
before going to sleep.) How easy it is when you have a 
Plan. Five words of Spanish, a page of Gibbon, 15 minutes 
of pushups on my memory muscles. Imagine how it will 
all add up in 365 days. 

Reduce 10 pounds. Only 160 ounces. Divide into 365 
days and what have you got? A mistake. (Memo: Brush 
up Arithmetic.) Where is that book I bought a few years i 
ago? I was going to read a page every night. Ah! Here 
you. are: “Mathematics for the Millions.” And what’s this 
upside down? “Science For The Citizen.” I was going 
to read that, too — orie page every morning when I woke up 
refreshed, alert, eager! This year I’ll do it. Definitely! 

But first things first. Reduce 160 ounces in 365 days. 
Why that’s only about Vz once a day. A cinch. No more 
hot buttered English muffins for breakfast. Well, . maybe 
only one. And no more crisp, savory bacon- — definitely— 
except maybe on Sunday mornings. You see it’s all in the 
way you approach it. Think it Through! Write it Down! 
Carry it Out! 

Have I been too preoccupied in the past with mundane 
matters? This year I shall add new dimensions of .spiritual 
growth. Where is that old list of Seven Deadly Sins? 
Pride, Covetousness, Lust, Anger, Envy, Gluttony and 
Sloth. What a Cinerama! Perhaps I shouldn’t try to van- 
quish them all at once; Tackle one a year, say. Start with 
Pride and save Sloth for the last. That will take me up 
to 1961 — when I’ll be 66 and Sloth will be an old friend 
and faithful cornpanion. 

I : Virtu es, Too! I 

So much for the Vices. Now for the Virtues. Through 
the years I must have made a thousand lists to practice 
on. Ah! Here’s a dandy! The Four Cardinal Virtues (all 
good as new.) Temperance, Fortitude, Prudence, Justice. 
And here’s another daring list: Patience, Modesty, Char- 
ity, Faith, Long-Suffering, Frugality, Piety and Benignity. 
Enough to ’ last a dozen lifetimes at the rate I’ve been 

Perhaps I have attempted too much in the past — this 
year will be different. I will make a Plan.: I will limit 
myself severely to these 12 Virtues— -no mord, no less and 
take on a different one q,ach month. I will start New 
Year’s day with Temperance— odd coincidence. Of course, , 

I could start New Year’s Eve, but ho! when you have made 
a Plan you must stick to it. Also, there is such a thing as 
being too ambitious and above all, one should guard 
against inciting in others a corroding envy and a hope- 
less rivalry. 

And there you have it. The New McEvoy for the New 
Year — gleaming like a white temple on a sunlit, hill. But 
hqw do I get there? I will follow the paper trail— those 
scraps of wisdorii I have collected through the years and . 
left scattered behind me. I need only to retrieve arid i' e - 
read them. Here’s good old Lao Tze: “A journey, of a 
thousand miles begins with one step.” And good old, 
Thoreau: “Simplify, simplify, simplify.” And good old 
Anon: “The way to begin is to begin.” 

That's it. Beginj Simplify. Take that first step.- ! 
will .start New. Year’s Day. I wi ll ntili zn Jihose-^filvit 
precious moments when 1 wake Up — refreshed, alejt, 
eager!. ' v . 


4 few Remarks on 



Ac a professional interviewer of 

4 rc t mav not be exactly, typical, 
it's stm hard to believe the 
Keck of disillusionment the pub- 
; - ^narently feels when they get 
1 «udddn shaft of light. You would 
have^ thought the Godfrey-LaHosa 
fncident was bigger , news than 
Eisenhower firing Dulles, because 
he was seen talking to Pean 
Acbeson or Malenkov canning 
Molotov on the grounds that Molo- 
E lacked humility. (Incidentally, 
he word “humility" will have .to 
be taken out of conversation for 
at least two years until this thing 
blows over.) , . . 

Far from being an exception, 
Godfrey’s feeling of being god to 
his cast and his audience is rather 
run-of-the-mill behavior where a 
star is concerned. Most stars conie. 
to bciieve themselves superhuman. 

i ^ Idolatry Gets 'Em 


The star is not entirely to blame 
for this. Audiences must take 
part of the blame. Americans in- 
sist on deifying their, entertain- 
ment and sports heroes. We idol- 
ize them out of all reality: We 
assume that, just because a man 
has a God-given talent for telling 
jokes better than anybody else or 
singing ballads, this makes him 
nobler than the common run of 

humanity; ; ; : . . . • . 

Of course, it does nothing of the 
sort; In fact, often the enormous 
wealth and adulation poured out 
upon actors, and baseball players, 
apd prizefighters, in out society 
has the effect of making them very 
hard to take in personal relations. 
A good deal of the personality 
troubles in which Frank Sinatra 
has been embroiled, such as the 
breakup of his first marriage and 
the conflicts with. Ava Gardner, I 
attribute to the fact that when he 
first exploded into stardom in 1944 
he received the kind of wild re- 
ception from audiences that would 
be enough to make any mortal 
think he was divine. 

Restrained ... by Libel 

television or on the screen with 
the human being behind the make- 
up and therefore -it recoils with a 
shiver of horror (mixed with the 
perverse pleasure we sense when 
someone rich and famous is caught 
in scandal) when (trouble comes to 
their Idols. 

, And Mad 


It is inevitable that a good many 
actors come to regard themselves 
above and beyond ordinary moral 
codes of behavior. Chaplin’s po- 
litical and romantic peccadilloes 
rise out of this same conviction of 
egotistical superiority. The star 
begins to share the delusion of his 
audience that. . he is more than 
human. Actually he has the same 
weaknesses (and virtues) as the 
rest of us. I could tell one story 
after another to bring out how uni- 
versal this power-complex is among 
stars but my lawyer, Harold Stern, 
*>f the firm of Jaffe & Stern, has 
other things to do than defending 
libel suits. 

My favorite story about dic- 
tatorial actors can be told, how- 
ever, since the hero is the late A1 
Jolson. One evening I dined with 
him at Hackney’s famous board- 
walk restaurant in Atlantic City. 
With us, were Eppy (Louis Ep- 
steint, Jolson’s amanuensis and 
Marlin Fried, his accompanist. 
Tlic waitress hovered over us, or- 
der pad in one hand. Jolson didn’t 
. as J l ^ny of us what we wanted. He 
said, ‘‘Four orders of cherrystone 

I objected. I said I didn’t like 
cherrystone clams. Jolson said I 
would eat cherrystone clams. I 
sa ! ( | 1 hated cherrystone clams. He 
said when I was with Jolson I ate 
what Jolson ordered. I said 1 
Wanted steamed clams. 

“You just let Joley order for 
you, boy,” he said peremptorily. 
I know what’s good, boy.” 

We continued, this childish ar- 
gument over every course of the 
six-course dinner. (For instance, 

■ ! insisted I try Alaska king crab 
when I Wanted broiled lobster.) 

Another time I happened to be 
ln . 1 he hotel suite of a comedian— 
who, like Godfrey, has had a myth 
unit up among the public that he 
is a sweet, lovable, down-to-earth 
imiVKlual— when his girl friend 

alkod into the room. She had just 
Purchased a new dress. She was 
t’.xhj biting; herself in it. 

How do you like this on me?” 
he asked the comic. 

uhuV ou *‘ here,” he barked, 
iJ hou c t even giving her the cour- 
vgm of ■to'MngTat the dress, “can’t 
Y° 1 ' see I’m busy?” 

in.fiu .^ e Public, insists oh confus-. 

t the. role played by an actor on 


Long dominated by a few power- 
house circuits, Chicago is at this 
writing a neighborhood exhibitors 
purgatory.. At least that’s how you 
get it from practically all neighbor- 
hood theatremen. Neurotics have 
nightmares about locomotives and 
eagles ih flight, Chicago neighbor- 
hood exhibitors have nightmares 
about the sun blacked out by a 
covey of reissues. One residential 
house asserts that for a month 
running it could not book a single 
new feature. 

The peculiarly Chicagoesque 
slant on reissues Is this: Some 
nabes are playing the same vintage 
celluloid which is also, at . the 
same time, peddled to television 
stations. Translated into common 
household terms this means that 
“for fee” entertainment is in direct 
rivalry with “for free” on the home 
receivers. They’ll assure you, ; the 
nabe operators, that this situation 
is not rare but commonplace. 

Syptoms a r e multiple, - The 
“also rans” of Chicago are perhaps 
the. also-ranningest houses in all 
America. To list a few, these are 
the woes of the nabes: two-way 
lacerations from TV, acute malnu- 
trition from product deficiencies, 
tax tapeworms, new media neuro- 
ses, varicose vandalism, complex 
profit dissipation, and now clear- 
ance consumption. Prognosis is 
anybody’s guess, 

; Product drought, severe as it has 
been, may now become insufferable 
with the recent; removal . (for six 
months) of the Jackson Park ban 
on pic clearances. Now, if the 
B&K circuit sees fit, it can hold 
back fresh product from the nabes 
for months. Under the . decree, 
now temporarily suspended, B&K 
had been limited concurrently to 
two-week first runs in the. loop. 

The situation grows more per- 
plexing with the new tendency 
among Loop mainstemmers to milk 
the life Out of each fair-to-middlin’ 
newcomer. Holdover trend has 
been exhaustiiig all of a picture’s 

drawing potential before the film 
ever reaches the neighborhoods 
and, worse yet, has been slowing 
down the product flow. 

With the four B&K houses 
downtown and the RKO Grand 
now free to hold over . product- l ike 
their indie loop competitors, the 
pipelining of films may be all but 
halted. If hungry before, nabes 
may now be famished. 

. What keeps exhibs exhibiting 
then? One dream is removal of the 
20% Federal amusement tax. They 
make no bones about admitting 
they want to pocket the extra 
change, instead of cutting prices. 
As is, admissions in the neighbor- 
hoods are as low, in certain sectors, 
as 25c and 35c, and often too : low 
to meet mounting operating and 
renovating costs. ; - 

Coincidentaliy with the “blight- 
ing” of certain neighborhoods 
comes the problem of vandalism, 
growing worse (his year than ever 
before. Scarcely a night passes in 
the slum districts, and over in 
some of the better areas, when the 
seats or screens aren’t slashed or 
the walls defaced by young sore- 
at-the-world hoodlums.' 

More than a few exhibs would 
sooner throw in, the towel than: 
watch the peaeemeaJ destruction 
of their houses. For them it’s the 
final stroke of chaos. 


( President , IATSE and MPMO o/ 17. S. & Canada) 


{Chairman, COMPO Public 
Relations Committee ) 

Our. industry has in the Council 
of Motion Picture Organizations 
the perfect public relations setup. 
However, if COMPO is to be 
Utilized only in crises, then we 
might as well throw in the towel 
as far as a planned public rela- 
tions program is concerned. 

Regardless of the outcome of the 
fight for tax repeal, COMPO 
should be given the green light to 
SmoVe ahead with its well designed 
p;r. program. 

. This requires money. When we 
consider, the war chests of other 
industries who know how to over- 
come adversity as well as how to 
make the most out of smooth 
sailiiig, we should feel . a trifle 
backward by comparison. 

COMPO has proved its efficacy 
on many fronts. And this, despite 
very little money. 

The 20% admission tax is our 
major, problem 'today. But there 
are many other problems which 
can pop up any minute. We must 
gear our ears to these rumblings 
of the new era. Any one, problem 
affects every branch of the busi- 
ness. To cite one: 

Censorship costs us not. only 
money, but loss of prestige, be- 
cause any industry that lacks the 

The year 1953 has been a chal- 
lenging, stimulating, exciting and 
often hectic one for a big majority 
of the film industry workers whom 
I happen to represent. 

For quite a while, prior to 1953, 
the projectionists and stage em- 
ployes at moving picture theatres 
scattered over America had been 
busy learning how to install and 
operate large-screen television — 
studying the various systems that 
came on the market and even send- 
ing delegates to a school which 
the International Alliance spon- 
sored jointly with RCA at Camden, 

n. j. . ; 

Then, suddenly, theatre televi- 
sion was sidetracked < perhaps just 
temporarily) by a series of sweep- 
ing changes in film presentation. 
First the Cinerama technique, in- 
troduced gradually in large cities, 
called for projection of three 
adjacent images from three differ- 
ent booths , and for synchronizing 
these with stereophonic sound" on 
a separate film; No sooner had our 
members grasped what Cinerama 
was all about than, they discovered 
themselves confronted n ear 1 y 
everywhere with three-dimension, 
locking two projectors together for 
simultaneous showing of overlap- 
ping films. At the same time came 
the battle of the aspect ratios, 

resources to combat this type of 
regulation cannot merit the respect j 
owing to it. 

And then we still are molested 
by crackpots, pressure groups, a nd 
even well-meaning people who al- 
ways think they know* what is 
wrong, but never right, atiout our 

It is now time to give COMPO 

necessitating new wide screens. 
And finally, recently, in more than 
a thousand situations, the boys 
had to help pull off the miracles 
of the Cinemascope lens and the 
penthouse reproducer. 

After attending quite a few 
IATSE regional meetings where 
the new dimensions were the chief 
topic of discussion, I know that our 
members backstage and up in the 
booths fully realize how much this 
technological revolution may mean 
to the future of the industry— and 
how great their own present re- 
sponsibility is. The difference 
between good and bad projection 
at this important juncture may 
mean the difference between win- 
ning, back hordes of customers or 
driving them away perhaps forever. 
Yes, the value of good projec- 
tion, I know for a fact, has been 
fully appreciated, and I am con- 
vinced that almost everywhere our 
I A projectionists have been doing 
their level best — studying the new 
requirements exhaustively, making 
the new installations with minute 
care. As it happens, they have 
been working against some Very 
great handicaps, especially in the 
field of 3-D. 

. One handicap has been make- 
shift ^ equipment. Dimen tionitis 
struck this industry at a time when 
many exhibitors were Concerned 
about the future. During the war, 

| machinery for modernizing .was not 
available, and after the war televi- 
sion scared them into watching 
and waiting. All too often, as a 
result, the projectionist was called 
upon to make a 3-D setup out of 
equipment which could better have 
been junked. 

Another grave handicap has 
the opportunity to appraise all of } been the lack of formal training 
these areas’ to real! v dp a job in (available to the projectionist. In 
all sectors where we need, well- ! most other industries today, before 
earned sympathy rather than ; a technician is placed in full 
captious, unfounded criticism. i charge of operating new devices. 

We hear rtiuch about the new 

ihe is sent to a school for as long 
; as six months and drilled in every 

era in out . business— about our . , . , 

hopes, and frustrations. But; we <*<“'• to.our own industry, by 

are* not unique. All industries ha™ ] “X, FSE * ^ 

just as many, if not more, prob- 
lems, than those confronting us 

terlocks. and filters and other 
! necessities were simply delivered 

The public likes us but we fail 
to reflect this popularity because 
we fail to capitalize on our friends. 
Instead, we worry about our 

rnMPO ran function well on all 
battlefronts if it is given more 
money and. more . manpower. • We 
should staff up to our ideals and 
program rather than play down to 
our frustrations. 


at a theatre — and the projectionist 
told to dope them out and get them 
running. This he did. with amaz- 
ingly good results for the most 

Over and over again in these 
emergencies, the existence of an 
IATSE local union was a tremen- 
dous help. Most locals picked a 
few of their ablest members, sent 
them to demonstrations which we 

j held in key cities and brought them 
have a plethora of public i back to pass along the new know!- 



relations opinion and a minimum j edge to|theii* fellow-members. And 
of mobilization. j together, in discussions, the broth- 

ers ironed out many a kink. 

But many a kink simply could 
not be ironed out on the theatre 
end. Production flaws in those 
early 3-D pictures were constant 
nightmares, as were the odds 
against obtaining well-synchroniz- 
ed prints. And the man in the 
booth, of course, was the one left 
holding the bag. 

Before the end of 1953, great 
improvements Were being made 
all along the line. The Polaroid 
Corp. had come out with a device 
that went far toward taking the 
guesswork out of 3-D synchroniza- 
tion. Moreover. 

Looking back, I wonder if the 
confusion was really necessary. 
Why do we keep a development 
like 3-D hidden away on the- shelf 
for years and years, pretending it 
doesn't exist, and then suddenly 
rush it into view without benefit of 
long and careful testing? Why 
can’t we be a little more like the 
automobile industry, which gets rid 
of at least most of the bugs before 
something new goes on to mar- 
keted models? 

The answer. I suppose, is that 
picture business always was and 
perhaps always will be a harum- 
scarum scramble. Set up a screen, 
and you’re an exhibitor. Grind out 
a few reels of film, and you’re a 
producer. Develop a gadget that 
strikes the public's fancy, and — 
bingo— you may start a technology 
cal revolution. 

Well, that’s the American way, 
the free enterprise system. 1 guess 
we can be proud of preserving an 
industry where every man still has 
a chance to hit the jackpot. Let’s 
hope and work for the industry 
as a whole to hit it by the end of 


200 Parrots and Mae West 

A True Confession 

T «in i ,i rr¥V' . - 


A very good friend of mine . walked into my office the 
other day. There was . a grin oh his face and something 
quite large covered by a cloth was hanging from his. 

hand ‘ “Wait’ll you see 1 what I got you for 

Christmas.” he said, With that he 
r ^SjT r Tn whipped oft the cloth and disclosed a 
- full-grown green and purple parrot 
in a glided cage!. .v u \ 

Vn ■ I took one look and dove behind the 

desk; screaming. “Get it out of here! 

4 Get it out! Hurry! Take it away!” 

L.f Mv friend blanched, rushed the 

a. parrot into the hall, left it there, re- 

PH turned. Closed the door and turned to 

all right,” he said. “He’s 


Maxwell Shane. j came out from, under the desk, 
di ank a glass of water to quiet my nerves, and collapsed on 
the couch. 

“What’s the matter?” he asked. “You got psittieosis or 
parrot phobia or something?” l ’ 

I took a deep breath, sat up. and told him the tiagic 
story! About me, Bill Pine, Bill Thomas, Mae West and 
the 200 parrots. ' 

It was back in the dim days when I was advertising 
director for Fanchon & Marco. Among their m -hy proj- 
ects, they then operated the Paramount Theatre in down- 
town Los Angeles. Responsible for exploiting all of the. 

• Paramount pictures which played that ho.u.te, 1 nad become 
■ very friendly, with Bill Pine, who was then publici,^ ■ direc- 
tor of Paramount S.udios, and Bill Thomas, w*vo was then 
his assistant.. , '■ 

We were about to play ‘College Humor' starring Bing 
Crosbv. One afternoon an ancient gentleman entered my 
office and announced that he was “old thin Schultz, the 
best theatrical "advance man who ever hit the . Mein Siem 
by way cf Texas/’ , 

He had a new gimmick he wanted to rent. me. a truck 
equipped with an amplifying apparatus, Whit made it 
different Was this— on top of the truck, old man Schultz 
had placed a dummy v.ich a papier macne heed of Crosby. 
As it rolled through the streets of Los Angeles, papier- 
mache mouth would open and close anci oel cf L would 
• c mte the auicet tones, of Crosby's songs from “College 
Humor.” by means of records playing inside tae.truck. 

It was a great gadget. I was to be the first itf Southern 
California to use it. So I signed the rental contract then 
and there. Tt worked out fine! We broke all house rec- 
ords with “College Humor.” 

What has this to do with parrots? Well, old 'mrsn Schultz 
Was so grateful that he insisted on doing me a favor. He 
told me he had exploited shows in New York' as -far .back 
as 1899. So. he figured, many of the stunts he had used 
Were so old that, used now. would bo now again. He 
wanted to. r-re:ent them to me for free, out of sheer friend- 
ship and gratitude. ’ 

‘Deep Purp!e\iii the Black ,l ‘ 

“Now the pest stunt I ever pulled.” he said "was used to 
exploit The Deep Purple’ in Manhattan. I bought 20 
parrots and trained them to say. ’Go see “The Deep 
Purple.” Then L gave one to each of 2T strategically 
located cigar stands around town. As customers came up 
to buy cigars, what was their amazement when the parrots 
would pipe up with ‘Go see “The Deeo Purple." ’ People 
talked about the stunt all over New York.” 

“Was ‘The Deep Purple’ a success?” T asked. 

Old nrn Sch.uhz potted me on the head end smiled 
gently. ‘ “You just get yourself some parrots,” he said. 

■ Train them to advertise one of your pictures, and you’ll 
make history.” 



to see Mae West/ ■ he intoned. “It ain’t no sin to see 
Mae West."' 

Weeks went by. The picture was. edited and previewed. 
Every day I called to find out if the parrots were talking. 
The release date was drawing near. The suspense was un- 

- Their one day it happened. —Bill-T-homas got me on-the 
phone. He could barely make himself understood. I 
finally gathered that he wanted me to came out to the 
Studio pronto. I rushed out. He and Bill Pine grabbed 
me by either arm and hustled me Out to the parrot cage. 
We faced the battery of cages. The parrots were squawk- 
ing, but I couldn’t make out any words. Then the trainer 
rapped with a little stick on a couple of the cages. Sud-. 
denly I heard a raucous voice squawking, “It ain’t no 
sin to see Mae Mest.” Another parrot took up the chant. 
Then another. And-another. 

The Bills and I grabbed each other in glee. We pounded 
each otlv;r cn the back. We laughed like crazy, You 
would think we had just struck oil. Our laughter was 
drowned In a parroted chorus. "It Ain’t No Sin. to See 
Mae West.” V':- 

We went back to the office and drank toasts of tri- 
umph while secretaries busily made out 200. shipping 
tags for sending .the' parrots to the 200 lucky exhibitors. 
I went back downtown tired but happy. 

As I entered the door of my office, my secretary was 
holding a phone and beckoning to me. 

“He just came in.’’ she said to the phone. ‘T’U put 
him. on,” 

I grabbed the phone. It was Bill Pine. He seemed in- 

“Wait a minute. Bill,” T said. “Take it easy. Say .it 
again, slower. 1 thought you said — — 

“I did.” he moaned! “I said,, they just wired me from 
New York. They changed the title of the picture!” 


“It ain’t ‘it Ain’t No Sin.’, .They’re calling it Belle of 
the Nineties’,” 

As he hung up. I was positive I heard Bill Thomas sob- 
bing in the background. - 

That’s ali there is to the story. Except — that was the 
firsi and last time I ever ate roast parrot for Thanks- 
giving dinner. 


Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

It’s More Than A Jungle’ 

* -o- _ 

— Hollywood. 

Nothing is as romantic on the inside looking out, as it is 
when you are on the outside -looking in. 

So it is with- oar ‘business — the most ruthlessly com- 
petitive there is. The compeiition begins with the selec- 
tion of a story. If the story is a bestseller or “hit play” 

t he producers scram ble all-out to sew . it up for their pro- 
duction schedule. If, on the other hand, it is an unpub- 
lished original, the wrher scrambles— competing with his 
fellow writers in an effort to. tell some producer that here 
is a potential hit: picture. Get past this stage, and the 
producer begins cullectirig his team, preferably people 
who. share his faith, but more important, people whose tal- 
ents and names will satisfy- the bankers and the paying cus- 
tomers in the theatre. Every stage of this collecting is 
competitive— the producer competing to sign the best 


< MPiC' Executive Secretary) 


Sitting . a round, gabbing with the guvs, the ears get 
cauliflovwred by all kinds of .yakily-yak. Some of it is 
gripe tripe, some cf it makes sense. Later, when you 
think- back a. d start sorting it out. certain- things stay 
with you. and uv.'ybe, even, arc' worth passing along for 
others to br.t around, too. . 

Like tiie feilov; v.v.o was doing some amusing musing 
about an eduori.T which gave a couple of Hollywood: peo- 
ple a goini ; -pvar for an o.i-again-on-again romance which 
kept bouncing onto the front pages. The editorialist 
sounded like he was out to break tne track and field rec- 
ord for standing high dudgeon. He was busy nominating 
the couple for total oblivion— in the same issue which 
front-paged the couple for the umpteenth time. 

“Why doesn’t Mr. Editorial Page start with his own 
paper, ’’ said our friend, “by giving them a quick brushoff 
back in the Want ads;. Nobody around here would mind. 
It could be that even the couple would be grateful. Seems 
to me they did their best to duck the reporters. Maybe 
they really are news and have no right, to expect that they 
can do their family fighting in private. But who really 
• decrees that they are news? Wlio decides that they are a 
hotter headline than the latest Vishinsky caper? Who 
makes the decision to nail the spotlight on them via an- 
other hunk of editorial type? that it’s the 
same boys who deplore on the editorial page the very 
thing they promote to Page One!” 

It gave us a little something to think about. So we 
dug into an old file because it seemed to us that someone 
else— a newspaperman — had raised that angle before. We 

ultimate attempt, to sell tickets to tins picture in prefer- 
ence to tlie one playing down the. street. . 

A producer can be denied financial backing for one 
failure, ah actor can go from $100,000 price tag to unem- 
ployment on the supposition that a picture’s failure; was 
due to his lack of boxoffice appeal. No One questions 
whether he can act. In fact, everyo’hewill admit he is a 
superb actor and knows his job thoroughly, but because 
Joe Sclimbe. the moviegoer, sat up with a sick friend or 
played, pinochle instead of seeing our hero, at the ^ijou, 
he faces starvation or a job on television. Some : compe- 

I T lie ReaMrohlenRule ~\ 

Still it’s remarkable how much the people of show busi- 
ness practice the Golden Rule. Maybe it is because the 
audience looms as the great threat that show: folks feel 
such a bond for each, other. 

This is reflected in our social pattern-^-close friendships 
seem to predominate among people who compete with each 
other in the selection of roles. Ava Gardner and Lana 
Turner' should- lie ignoring each other instead of hanging 
on the phone with a daily exchange of news items; Jimmy 
Cagney, Pat O Brien and Spencer Tracy can conceivably 
vie for roles, but they form three leaves of a friendly 

However, there arc more than personal friendships at- 
testing to this “camaraderie.” Ask any actor or actress 
the story of his or her career and back in the struggling 
days, you'll hear of some established performer reaching 
down to lend a hand. As a matter of fact, riiore young 
performers are brought to Lie attention of producers and 
directors by performers than by any other means — even 
though the youngsters are a potential threat to the careers 
of these voluntary talent scouts. The truth is, actors are 
j.ust suckers for other actors. 

Yet. why shouldn't 1 "this be so? Why shouldn’t the 
guvs and gals of gtamorland know' how to be nice and how; 
to cook and mow lawns? Actors and actresses Avercn’t 
created out of backstage magic and deposited in California 
as already full-grown matinee idols bathed, in stardust. 
Look at the kid in your hometown high school play — the 
girl with the nice voice— the doctor’s daughter—the boy 
who won the Declamation Contest and works Saturdays in 
the drugstore. These are Hollywood tomorrow. We were 
they yesterday. 

People are the product of the sum total of all their 
experience, and the stars of Hollywood came from the 
eastside of New York (Tony Curtis), a little town in Iowa 
(Donna Reed), a -whistle, stop in Texas (Ann Sheridan'. 
Name, a state, a town, a country— someone in Hollywood 
calls it home. They brought to Hollywood all the char- 
acter and principles that were standard in their communi- 
ties, their schools and churches — or didn't you know' that 
the education level among show people is ; 8(Kc high 
school or bettor, as contrasted to a national average of 28^ . 
and that 61 r r of our people regularly attend churches of 
all denominations. As for those who fall by the wayside, 
don’t blame Hollywood. No one goes Hollywood— they 
were that wav before they came here. Hollywood just 

I thanked him. gave him a. cigar, and he walked out. 

I never saw him again. Maybe he's exploiting Cinema- 
Scope in Alaska now at the age of a hundred. I don’t 

But toe parrot stunt fascinated me. I couldn’t use it 
mjself because our budget for the theatre would never 
stand the strain of purchasing 20 perrols and training 
them. So I decided to be a great pal and give the stunt 
to my good friends, the two Bills, Pine & Thomas. Their 
studio budgets could stand plenty of parrots. 

I rushed out to the studio arid told the Bills about old 
man Schultz and the parrots. 

“We ll use it for the new Mae West opus,” enthused 
Bill P. 

“Let’s get 200 parrots and train them and send one to 
each of 200 top exhibitors who book the picture,” said 
Bill T. 

“What'll you train them to say?” Tasked. 

- “The title of the -picture. is-Tt Ain’t No Sink"’ said Bill T. 

“Great,” said Bill P. “We'il train them to say, ‘It Ain't 
No Sin to See Mae West' ’’ 

“Great:” said Bill T. 

“Perfect!" said 1. 

“Can’t you just hefr them now?” said 13i.ll Pine. “200 
parrots in 20!) 'theatre, lobbies two weeks before the open- 
ing of the picture, saying to every customer who passes, 
‘It Ain’t No Sin to See Mae West’.” 

"They shook my hand. They pounded my back. Even 
before I was- put.' of the door, they- w ere getting New 
York. on the phone to tell Coe great stunt to Bob' .'Gill ham, 
then director of advertising and publicity for Paramount, 
and to get the budget ■okayed- for the purchase and training 
of 200 parrots. ' C • 

During the next few" weeks, like, an expectant father. 
I kept in close touch with the Bills. 1 wanted to know; 
every thing that .was happening with the parrot slunt. 
They got the budget okayed; They bought the 200 par- 
rots. They found a German bird trainer who swore that 
he could leach parrots to say anything. 

The 200 parrots Avere ensconced in an abandoned stage 
on the hack lot. For eight hours every day*, the bird 
trainer paraded down the row of cages. “It ain’t no sin 

came across a remarkably frank paragraph by a Hollywood 
columnist headed. “Who's To Blame?” and commenting, 
“When readers complain to ine about so many lurid head- 
lines about Hollywood, I’m reminded of a girl who came 
here from a small town when she was. 19 to write for her 
hometown paper." The columnist told how the girl 
“needed help in getting stories” and was taken to the 
Good Shepherd Church in Beverly Hills one Sunday and 
introduced to Irene Dunne, Loretta Young and several . 
others after the service. “She wrote her reaction in a 
> column for her newspaper,” related the columnist, "and 
was fired lor her efforts. The paper wanted only glamorous, 
sensational stories from Hollywood. ...” 

But that still wasn’t what we had been reminded of. 
And then we found it in a piece by Reed Porter in the 
Los Angeles Mirror — a paragraph observing . . be- 
cause everything they do is front page news. Made 
front page news by the very people who frequently revile, 
them the loudest. . . That was it— good stuff for others: 
to chew over, too— the thought-provoking sentence: 

“Made front page news by the'’ very people who fre- 
quently revile them loudest. . . .” 

f.t >:<' 

Then there, was another alley that the gab had wandered 
into-. '; . the way. the hanky-panky hogs the front page, 
while the good deeds seemed, so completely unknown. We 
had heard ipariy people in the industry wince over the lop- 
sidedness. Was that, somebody asked, because the editors 
always seem to relish sinners more than saints. Probably' 

so, -who doesn’t, somebody else said. 

' ' ■* ’ 

But there’s another big reason for the. lopsided ness, 
argued an ex-newspaperman who is now a screenwriter— a 
reason that lands right back in the industry’s lap! “Did 
it ever occur to you to check how little this industry puts 
out on paper or on film .about its virtues?” he said. 
“There’s plenty to tell. Why is. it kept such a secret?” 
Which struck vis as a fair question. Others thoughtso, top. 

We mulled over the Mississippi flow of copy about 
movies that grinds off the. mimeographs every day— -with 
so little of it in an institutional vein. Somebody else said 
that we appeared to be the only important industry riiinus 
a program of institutional advertising. Knowing of the 
efforts of the MPAA and the occasional stabs by COMPO 

exposed it. 

and the MPIC, we offered a light dissent— but had to admit 
that the volume was nothing compared to the need. 

Under our nose was a full column in the Toronto Globe 
& Mail scowling about a Hollywood divorce case— ob- 
viously written by a guy who hadn’t the faintest knowledge 
that the Hollywood divorce rate is lower than the national 
average. How come he didn’t know? He’s supposed to be 
well-informed — he’s a columnist, isn’t he? Well, was the 
answer, how could we expect him to know if we never 
point out these things ourselves in ways that can really 
register . And what about the place. of the movie house. as 
a community institution and all the other things that need 
to be proclaimed with punch and persistence. “Yeh.” 
was - the sumup, “how' are they gonnai know if tec don’t 
even tell ’em. . ...” 

The yakity-yak slacked off. But w'e couldn’t escape that 
last, sentence. We found ourselves wishing we could string 
it out in neons at all those industry conventions and meet- 
ings that clog the calendar: 

“How are they gonna know if toe don’t even tell ’em.’* 

■ * ' * 

The cokes Had been passed around. And now we were 
into the entire subject of industry . public relations . 
and how- so many sounded off so Often about what this 
industry needs is better public relations— but so seldom 
matched their mooing with their moola. 

“JhCre isn’t a sirigffi thing wrong with industry public 
relations' that cah’t be cured,” said the oldest among us. 
“Trouble is you can’t do the job without staff arid facilities 
• and you can’t have staff arid facilities without money. And 
this billion dollar industry still hasn't learned to put out 
for p.r.” Somebody, else said. how. conic and another fellow’ 
thought it might be because so mariy people in the. indus- 
'.try know all about publicity but so very few understand 

anything about public relations. And that was when they, 
came up with the line that really, hung in the ear — arid 
seemed like something so Vycll worth noting and quoting. 
“Maybe,” was the food-for-thought snapper* “the trouble is 
that, in this industry, public relations needs a public rela- 
tions, campaign. ' 

Take it from there. 

^cdneaday, January *, 1954 

Forly-elghth Annicertary 




every week in the news columns of 

ational Box 



Top Grosser s of 1954 



boxoffice performance 
will be delivered by 





Bob Hope 
Tony Martin 
Arlene Dahl 

Color by Technicolor 








Wednesday, January 6 V 1954 

:v -v»' 





Dean Martin 


Jerry Lewis 
in 3-D 

Color by Technicolor 

1 f 



* Hi,- , -H " w-v 

' V'ij. 

■ • • vS'rfA-: 




Ginger Rogers 
William Holden 
Paul Douglas 
James Gleason 
Pat Crowley 

\ s ^ 

iii 1 


MaiZe tterling 
Color by Technicolor 
Stereophonic Sound 




William Holden 



Kirk Douglas 
Silvaho Mangano 
Anthony Quinn 
Color by Technicolor 
A Lux-Ponti 
De Laurentiis 

* ' ' 'V /!*'/ 

' ■■ %%v.<va%<v/.v.v.v,%v/Jv. , ;%v;*>/ 



Color by 


Elizabeth Taylor 
Dana Andrews 
Peter Finch 
Color by Technicolor 



Charlton Heston 

Yma Sumac 
Nicole Maurey 
Thomas Mitchell 
Color by Technicolor 



Bob Hope 
Joan Fontaine 
Audrey Dalton 
Basil Rathbone 
Color by Technicolor 




Shirley Booth 
Academy Award Best 
Actress of 1953— 
co -starred with 

Robert Ryan 
Alex Nicol 





u i, s'S ' K ' .. 



Dean Martin 
and Jerry Lewis ^ 
Janet Leigh 
Color by Technicolor 



Humphrey Bogart 




Robert Ryan 
Jan Sterling 
Brian Keith 
Gene Barry 

ic Sound 

■ 4 \ 

r "'V I 

’y j ■ 

w?- ^ 

fv . A *> 



; Vj\ 

f/ /0 
h 'i ' •'/ 



A i''*. 





Rosemary Clooney 
Jack Carson 
Guy Mitchell 
Pat Crowley 
Gene Barry 
Cass Daley 
Color by Technicolor 

* ( ■ 

l F.Ik 







Eleanor Parker 
Charlton Heston 
Color by Technicolor 
Stereophonic Sound 

will deliver more hits 
to more theatres 

in ’54 

than any other 

William Holden. 
Walter Hampden 
oduced and directed 
by Billy Wilder 


Forty-eighth MS&liETY Anniver$ary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954, 



111 over 




AND IN ’54 

man Will Want To Play 


•*/ “V 




Bing Crosby ° Danny Kaye • Rosemary Clooney ° Vera-Ellen 

Color by Technicolor 

Wedneadar, January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth ^^SStErY Anniversary 





(V.P. & G.M., Interstate Circuit) 


t refuse to be a member of the defeatist group who 
that the motion picture business is doomed. How- 
i ’ being completely realistic, I recognize that we are 
ponfionted with a shortage of product, the 
federal tax, a decline art grosses, 

20 A increasing operating costs. Also 
? n n widescreen, stereophonic sound, 
lie' are revolutionary factors. These 
innovations are extremely expensive; 

"wove.-, I ‘eel they are essential. 

Because of the resulting indecision 
and turmoil, I decided « make an ; ex- 
amination of myself, my 'Wrcuit and 
its manpower, and our industry, at the 
same time checking into other vital 
industries of our great American na- 
tion. In the past 60 days I have con- 
sulted with executives in leading in- 
dustries, and I found they have just 

Bob O’Donnell 

nvnhipms as we have- — perhaps more, yet ' their 
many pioblem , ^nddorahiv while ours has. 



have increased considerably 

S’Sdiiy declining within the past seven, years 

U'' 111 . . r«. nnnoorr 


There is cause 
status of 1946 With 1953, 

concern when we compare our 
In 1946 we find that but of a 
billion from all sources, 

hnxoS While in 1953 out of the expected gross.national 
bo\piiice>. w billion from flU sour ces, theatre boxofhee 

ilceibis°will^prbhabiy show only $ 1 , 225 , 000 , 000 . This rep- 
J.escn P ts a decline in relationship with the national income 

° f otheS advantage of this period of pros- 

nPiitv which saw an increase in population from 130,000,- 
nOO people to 160,000,000 or a total of 24,000,000 additional 
people The motion picture industry failed to capitalize on 
this national income or this increased population. 

In 1946, out of 112,000,000 people who could have at- 
tended motion picture theatres, 82,400,000 people bought 
tickets, arid in 1953 ohly 46,000,000 people attended the 
movies out of a potential audience of 127,000,000. 

All' other industries and commodities have shown a, 
gradual but steady increase in revenue from 1946 to 1953. 
Mso these industries and commodity manufacturers have 
increased their advertising appropriations, while the riio- 
tion picture industry has had a gradual but steady increase 
in revenue and likewise a decrease in advertising budgets. 

Diminishing Advertising 

ease of driving for the woman. In addition, the pew model 
cars are changing in color from the browns, blacks and 
greys to the pastel shades so dear to milady's heart. 

1 The merchandising of food amd supplies is today some- 
thing to behold. The supermarkets are really super in 
their appeal to the housewife. She selects her choice 
from the finest in foods including scientifically and attrac- 
tively ^ wrapped meats, vegetables and staples in a shop 
that is impeccably clean and airconditioned; brightly 
lighted and attractive in the smallest detail; in many in- 
stances she knows the manager and the staff and they are 
interested in her orders and courteous in their attention. 

Too often the. reverse happens when she goes to the the- 
atre with her family. The . odor is offensive and the rest 
rooms are dirty.. The picture from the projection machine 
hits everything but the screen.; The sound is too loud and 
the; carpets worn. In general, the atmosphere is depress- 
ing, with sullen, arrogant, untrained and understaffed per- 
sonnel to make the condition even worse. 

This is one of the vital reasons for our declining box- 
office. In Texas — and we are supposed to have the bestf-^ 
43 theatres are. without, rest rooms, 65 still use wall and ■ 
ceiling fans for ventilation. More than 100 theatres are 
cleaned only once a week. As a result, rats and roaches 
haye taken oyer; and the patrons, especially the women, 
are horrified. 

Our plans at Interstate for 1954 are complete and now 
under, way not only to achieve our 15% . attendance in- 
crease via advertising and selling, but there is going to be 
a Veritable upheaval in the housekeeping department. 

. We recognize the error and we are determined no longer 
to spend vast sums using all channls of newspapers, radio, 
television, and others; vast sums for - new screens and 
equipment to operate them and yet expect men, women 
add children tb attend and pay for the privilege of attend- 
ing a theatre that is nbt kept as well as the most slovenly 
kept house. 

This program is my task and I have dedicated myself to 
fulfill it. 

In 1946 the entire motion picture industry expended 
some $140,000,000 for advertising, which is 8.3% of the 
total gross of $1,810,000,000. In 1953 the industry is esti- 
mated to spend $65,000,000, or 5.2% of the total gross of 

It is an established fact that the major industries and 
commodity manufacturers already have plans and appro- 
priations for the largest advertising budget in their his- 
tory for 1954. These budget increases range from 11% to 
22% over their 1953 figures, This is their method of doing 
a selling job if they are to realize benefit from the 24,000,- 
000 increase in population. 

There are those who say that our decline at the box- 
office can be attributed to lack of product or bad product. 
In my opinion, this is not true, especially this past year, 
as pictures have been, better than ever. I believe • the 
fallacy has been our own failure to sell, these pictures. 

Certainly television has hurt, to some degree, but so 
have many other types of entertainment. For example, 
professional , football in the relatively new field of sports 
has enjoyed an increase in attendance from 2,046,724 in 
1946 to an estimated 2,800,000 in 1953. Incidentally, 
the attendance in bowling allies has increased to a fabu- 
lous figure over this seven-year period. 

Of particular interest to theatre owners arid managers 
is the fact that in 1946 the age group from 12 years to 22 
represented 27% of the theatre-going public. In 1954 the 
percentage for this group will increase to 29.9% of the 
entire potential moVie-going public. The age group of 22 
to 30 years in 1946 represented 23.8% of the potential and 
"ill increase to 25.5% in 1954. 

Too Many Divergent Factors 

4 4 



Edwin Knopf 

The age groups from 20 years ori are living in a volatile 
economy which gives them such spending power that they 
have the privilege of choosing among many different recre- 
ational pursuits, such as sporting events, night clubs, tele- 
vision, legitimate theatre, as well as doing home entertain- 
ing on a big scale. Weekend travel, for instance, is taking 
an increasingly large amount of the average individual’s 
time and income. 

Our challenge, therefore, is selling these same incli- 
xiuals on attending motion picture theatres each week 
i ni .. in 2 certain that they will find entertainment and 
eiaxalion which -will bring them back again and again, 
ini l 11y es ^ ima tion 1954 looks brighter than ever for bur 
oustry. There are now 24,000,000 more people than 
im : . ,in ^t)’ our best year. Perhaps there will be 
piC L U . rcs * but they will be much better pictures, 
bnng our largest grosses and our greatest profits . 
mifi . 1 S , lng c °sts of operation, but, only by taking full 
‘ ‘9^® advantage 'of the selling avenues so easily 

available to. us. 

Oui objective at Interstate is an attendance increase Of 
ti* 1 - OVO ' ,y theatre in 1954 over 1953. We are confident 
f'viiai r be/done through two major projects, namely, 

Vmu ‘'x 0 Use °f advertising and selling campaigns tor 
( «'Ui picture, plus' 

Efic Johnston 



“Write about Europe,” the man said. “Write all about 
the motion picture business in Europe.” 

What can I wrjte about the motion picture business in 
Europe .that hasn’t already been written over and over 


That business is good? No secret! 
That the people on our side of the 
Iron Curtain still have the moviegoing 
habit? Turn to “Foreign Grosses.” : 

That the French and Italian exhibi- 
tors achieve with 'their poster work 
effects that make practically all Amer- 
ican billboards look tired arid in- 
fantile? That story could be told by 
anyone who has walked down the 
main drag of any European city large 
or small. 

Or perhaps that there is in the Eu- 
ropean branch offices of all American 
studios an excitement, a dynamism, a determination to. sell 
to the . ultimate potential each and every foot of film the 
studio sends them? Anyone who has spent an hour in the 
office of any sales manager in Paris, Rome or anywhere 
else on the Continent knows that is true. Try it. You’ll 
be- inspired. But you will be sadly aware of the contrast 
to the tired, bored climate that prevails in so many sales 
departments in America. 

I know, of course, that none of the foregoing is news. 
And that is why I do not want to attempt to "write all 
about the motion picture business in Europe.” 

I want, rather, to write about the teris of hundreds of 
passenger-carrying liners that sail the seven seas, Each 
and every one of these is a floating motion picture theatre 
of sorts. From the great Curtarders and our own S. S. 
United States with their large auditoriums, down to the 
afterdeck of a small freighter sailing the tropical seas with 
one 16m projector, they are entertaining audiences that 
add up to hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions each 
year. And this audience is a captive audience. 

Bored,, relaxed, tired of reading or just looking at the 
sea. they go to the movies because there is nothing else 
to do. Very few of them are regular filmgoers. but all of 
them are potential, customers if only we would make it our 
business to entertain them. But what do we do to cap- 
tivate our captives? Well, for the most part, we bore 
them even more than the endless miles of sea. We do this 
lor the simple reason that four out of five pictures are 
pretty bad. And thus four out of five pictures shown on 
shipboard are pretty bad. Which is why in nt 01 e ■ J 11 
dozen Atlantic crossings I’ve heard so many of our "cap- 
tives” emerging from the theatre uttering those frighten- 
ing Words: “That’s why I never go to movies.” 

Now I know of course that the picture companies are in 
business tb earn money. But isn’t the opportunity to win 
hundreds of thousands of new friends a bigger chance for 
greater revenues than the few dollars we now collect ft dm 
seagoing rentals? 

If instead of just selling any old piece 
steamship companies we allowed only 



(President, Motion Picture Association Of America) 


.. Attention, coffee-house intellectuals, eggheads, pundits 
and pontiffs: 

Are you weary of debating cold war strategy? Seeking 
escape from the pros and cons of McCarihyism? Tired of 

speculating about what's going on in- . 
side the Kremlin? Are you up to your 
money belt in tax' arguments? 

If you are, I can promise you relief 
—a relief that does not make : you . 
swear off or Gut down on you)* habit of 
making tall talk in the small hours, I 
can offer you on free trial a substitute 
subject which will get an argument 
out of anyone. It is as safe as it is 
indecisive arid as profound as it is 

It’s a wonder remedy ... UiaU_cur_e.s_ 
your ailment without removing any 
of the symptoms. It’s a way of eating 
your, cake even if you haven’t got any in the first place. 

The substitute subject is : “What’s a Motion Picture?" 

Now at first view; you might be tempted tomake sweep- 
ing generalizations. You might be led. to believe that the: 
question is a simple one and the answer plain. Don’t get 
trapped. It isn’t that easy. 

For instance, have you stopped to think . whether a 
motion picture is art or amusement— or is it both? . Can a form of education arid entertainment at the same 
time? To what extent are. pictures a medium of public 
expression? Of self-expression? Of no expression? 

Now the type that I call the O.S.S. < the over-simplifying 
so-and-so) -will try to hack his way out of this Overgrowth 
pf queries with glib cliches. He is ready with the grand 
answer to these questions: “It all depends.” 

So far as the OvS.S., is concerned,. all. documentary films 
are educational by definition, but is an especially good 
one, he might rate it as a work of art. If he. likes it, he 
might regard it as entertainment as. well. . 

The O.S.S, will tell you flatly and patly that motion 
pictures are a medium of public expression. No argument 
about that; 

Comedies by O S S, standards are outright, amusement. 
What else?: So are musicals unless a coloratura is perform- 
ing. Then once again, they come back to art. 

The O.S.S. can dispose Of Westerns too without any . 
/ trouble. They are tales of adventure arid as such come 
under the heading of entertainment and amusement — 
unless, of course, he is referring to “High Noon” or 
“Shane.” Even the O.S.S. is not inclined to write these 
productions off as mere galloping stories. 

of; film to the 
the cream Of the 
new • • and this is a big plus % . . 

P . icinodeling of our housekeeping methods. 

, vn '° n ° t nee d to call your attention to the fact that the 

iiin 0£ PH 1 * nat ion not only rule the home, they control 
• P^’sestrings as well. “ ' ‘ 

llle y maintain then). 

a com- 

ei-op to go aboard the ships mightn’t w^ win^maiiy new 
‘‘regulars''? Remember the “regulars . 1 hat golden 

group of pncc-or-lyice-a-wcckers? They wore the real 
financial backers of opr industry. ’ 

How could wc achieve this? Perhaps by forming a com- 
mittee to pass upon all pictures to be shown at sea. A 
committee the members of which would not be connected. 

H h iny proaiting Studio and thus would be 
wnii tti y v - it ,1... jjj S ^ sentence is 

They have set high standards 

— Mistake to Ignore Femmes _ 

of only one major industry Which has failed 
infVn 6 4^ hot' hopelessly, by ignoring this fact. The 

j, 1 ■ 1Q fi of indifference to women is so apparent 
w ot ,P^ onou h < “Od in the case of this single industry that it 
T , ^ seem to have almost become a policy. 

], ■ automobile industry is high on the list of those who 

p (1 consistently. catered to the woman carOwner. Each 
car has brought the last word in comfort, safety and 

And if that 

then it is 

mntplv destroy our industry, 
been able to get together On anything should serve only to 
highlight the necessity of getting together on everything 

a, L^spHng‘, crossing on the Libcrte,. afi exceptionally 
fine film was presented. Within an hour it became tie 
main topic of conversation. “One forgets how wonderful 
mo ”cs can be.” ”1 must go to the pictures more oltcn. 

“I wonder what’s showing tomorrow.” 

Well tomorrow, alas, a rea l brute ^va^th£owji^oij_tll_ 
screen and once again my shipboard acquaintances were 
informing me, “Tfiat’s why 1 never go to movies. 

More Initials 

Having breezily buttoned up the subject to his own 
satisfaetiori, the O.S.S. is ready for smug departure. He’ll 
never get away even with interference spearheading an 
exit for him— not if a P.P.P. is within earshot. 

The P.P.P. are the initials of the philosophical popular- 
ity-phobes. They aren’t really interested in the content 
or form of any presentation or production. What counts is 
the kind of audience it draws. 

. ; The way the P.P.P. ’s have it figured out. any perform- 
ance which has popular appeal cannot be lofty. If a mes- 
sage is easily understood it cannot be important. 

Take drama. In between acts in the theatre lobby, they 
can talk of art. they can laud the author for having gotten 
something great off his chest. But let someone adapt the 
play for the screen and the P.P.P. is ready to turn up his 

The O.S.S ’s and the P.P.P.’s are but tw o debating teams 
with views of their own on motion pictures. There are 
several others like the A.G.'s 'the anti-gaiety types) who 
consider laughter and music as frivolous forms of enter- 
tainment bordering on luxury; and the M.H 's * the Midway 
• Hawkers) who regard movies as carnival concessions. 

Get. all these, characters together any night and you are 
bound to have a super-charged exchange of conversation 
and philosophies. If in this spicy stew you would like 
to add a balancing ingredient, you might irv inviting a 
normal movje-goer who goes to the picture show to pass 
the time pleasantly and to get away from everyday prob- 
lems and cares. 

Hollywood's critics very clearly use artistic yardsticks 
for judging our films. The tax collector uses the standards 
of the carnival \n -placing amusement levies on the trade. 
The censor looks at movies as instruments of expression 
against which he must protect, not himself, of course, but 

the other fellow. ■ 

In the final analysis: wouldn’t you conclude that motion 
pictures are just about all things to all people? 

I would like to see the critics, the collectors and the 
censors get together. and try to come to a common deci- 
’ sion. Come to think of it. what if you put all three of 
them in one room and locked the door— maybe nobody 
would ever come out. And wouldn't that be a shame! 

in their selection, of films. . 

nonsCnse then it is the kind of nonsense that will ulli- 
nonsense tmn , ..... The fact that wc hav c never 

only to 

When does woman 
Sometimes if you're sort of near 'em 
But always if yon .cannot hear 'em 
That's when women speak 
When you are shaking in a shower,. 

Or splashing up a whiskey sour, 

Or writing thanks to Cousin Joan, 

Or answering the telephone- 
That's when, w omui. speak— 

In pique. 

VV.hcn floes wamnir confide? ■ 

When you oVe trit/i- a mnyorJue- 
Or when you're u at where you hud been , 
Or tf/toi she runs the kitchen tup, 

Or you decide to. .take a nap — 

That's when she'll confide— 

In pride. 

When docs woman confess? 

When she’s on deck and you’ve the galley, 
When TV has a V-necked Valli, 

Of Lewis is making funny cracks, 

Or yoti compute your income tax — 

That’s when women confess^— 

The rest, is silence-— Oh, yes? . . ' 

Alan Jackson . 



The Extra-Seasonr Screen 

It was one of those dull afternoons in the office between 
crises. We hadn’t had a panic for almost 48 hours. I waj 
sitting at my desk, looking out the window, supervising 
the erection of a 20-story skyscraper going up across the 
street when the phone buzzed, I picked it up. 

' Professor Smith on the wire,” my secretary said. 

- ‘.‘Smith?” I asked. ‘‘What does he want?” 

‘‘How should I know?” my girl asked. Always practical, 
always polite; The well trained secretary type. 

I thought for a moment while looking out the window. 
Things across the street Were going along all right .It 
looked as if they could get along without me for a while. 
Besides, Prof. Smith was no guy to slough off. He s had 
come in mighty handy in several crises before. Especially 
the television panic of ’48-’49.- He figured out a. method 
of theatre lighting then, which immediately reduced the 
size of- the : theatre screen to that of .a 12-inch TV . Set as 
T fiodn“a"s _ nTeTjati , on assumed his seat. 

I pressed the button. “Professor Smith,” I said cor- 
dially. “Good to hear from you. What’s the occasion?” 

“Mr. Robbins,” he said gutturally, in liis indescribable 
accent. “1 godt idt! I godt idt!” 

“Got what. Professor?” I asked, my, eyes wandering back 
to the building across the Street. They were hoisting a 
steel beam up to the 15th floor. There’s something fas- 
cinating about a steel beam going up, spinning slightly 
in the wind. You Wonder if at any minute it’s going to 
snap the slender cable, and conic, tearing down into the 
street. In your mind’s eye, you can already see the head- 
lines in the evening 'papers. 1 wondered vaguely Whether 
I should call the newsreel to come down and cover it. 

“The new screen,” he answered. “Idt vill revolutionize 
the pictureVbusiness!” : 

“What new screen?” I asked, my mind still elsewhere; 

“Mr Robbins.’’ his voice was petulantly reproachful, 
“Last April your company gave me $100,000 to develop a 
new screen for your exclusive use; Remember, you said, 
each company has its own process. Three D, Cinerama, 

. CinemCScope,. Warnerscope— - — ” 

Now I remembered. Last season’s panic always seems to 
"dull. “Ves. Professor,” I interrupted. 

“Veil, I god’t idt.v.he said.. “The extra — sensory screen. 
Eggsclusivo vidt. Magnum Pictures.” 

“Extra— Sensory Screen,” J mused, aloud. I liked, the 
sound of it even if I didn’t know >vhat it meant. “Great 
work. Professor. ” I. added enthusiastically. “Let’s make a 
date for next month to look at it.” 

“No.” he said , firmly- “You vill come now andt look adt 
idt. Idt s costing $1,000 a day to keep vorking.” 

“In that case. Professor,” I said quickly. “I’ll be over at 
your laboratories in 20 minutes,” 

* * # 

Professor Smith was a small man, with a white moustache 
-and- goatee. --He lookpd-iikR a_prQ£essor. He met me at 

Forty-eighth 'Anniversary 

suspected myself of having such dramatically expressive 

All too soon the picture came to an end. The varied 
color lights and sounds were back into the room. I turned 
to the professor. “Simply magnificent!” I exclaimed It 
was lift? a dream come true.” 

The professor smiled at me. “Yah, dot’s Idt. Dot’s 
Just vot idt vas.” 

My voice was incredulous.' “You mean you made no film 
of that wonderful story? That it will never be seen 

“Nodt my anyone else,” he said reassuringly. “But you 
can see idt vhenever you vant. As many times as you 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

j ft MUUUlUfMIIMlMNMI tUtlllM 

the doer to his office and took me by the arm.. “Mr. Rob- 
bins.” he said. “Ve vill go ridght to the projection room.” 

I allowed him to steer me down the hall to. another 
door. Over the door was a sign. Big red letters. TOP 
SECRET. KEEP OUT. I hesitated a moment, waiting for 
him to proauce a key to the. door, but he merely turned . 
the knob and .walked in. 

I was bewildered. “Don’t you keep it lopked?” 

“Vhatfor?" he asked.- “I godt der sign outside.” 

Made sense. I followed him into the room. The first 
thing that hit me was the screen. It was a white shroud^ 
that covered the whole room. The walls all around, reach* - 
ing to a peak on the ceiling directly over our heads. We 
were ’completely surrounded by it. In the center of the 
room were approximately 30 seats, placed in a circle, fac- 
ing out toward all, corners of the room. Behind the seats 
Was a large metal bulb set With various colored prisms. 

“Looks great.. I said to the professor. “But where’s 
the projector?” 

He pointed to the metal bulb. “Dot’s idt.” He pressed 
a button. 

Immediately the bulb began to glow, throwing soft 
multicolored lights that danced slowly around the room. 
At the same time, a low discordant hum of music came 
to my ears, as if an orchestra was tuning up in the dis- 
tance. Behind the sound -of music I could hear the 
hum of a thousand voices, all speaking under their breath. 
It was v/eird. 

I turned to the professor. “Fantasia de luxe,” I said. 
“But where’s the picture, the film?” 

He shook his head proudly. “Don’t der whole secret. No 

film ** 

“No film?" I cried. “Then how do you get the picture?” 

“Zimple,” he smiled. He peered knowingly at me over 
his glasses. “You hear of der great psychologist, Ror- 
schach?” Without waiting for me to reply, he continued. 
“He developed a test. Inkblots on a piece white paper. 
You look adt idt and your mind sees vot it vants to see. 
Don’t how mv screen vorks, only vit sound and music 

I was real bewildered now. I looked around the room. 
Damned if I could make anything out of this mish-mash of 
color and noise. “Professor,” I asked suspiciously, “Have 
you been drinking?” 

He shook his head proudly. “Dot’s der whole secret. No 
you people in der picture business. No imagination. I 
haff vit vun svoop, solved all der problems of der busi- 
ness. From now on the patron sees nothing but vot dey 
vant to See. ■ Every time a hit.” . 

“1 don’t see anything,” I said stubbornly. 

. “Of course not,” he said. “First you. must sidt down; 
Then, der chair vit its extra-sensory selector vill tune you 
in to der picture.” 

He pushed me toward a chair and I sat down. For a 
moment I was vaguely conscious of him fumbling at some- 
thing behind me. Then Suddenly, a siring of screen credits 
Were flashing in front of me. 




A nice warm glow 'ran through hie. I turned to the pro- 
fessor in the dimness. “This is real great,” I said. “About 
time I was recognized in this business.” 

I looked up At the screen agpin. It was a wonderful 
story. Full of, beautiful girls and exciting situations. And 
last, but not least, I was marvelous in the lead, I. never 

I thought for a moment. In riiy mind’s eye, I could see 
what effect this would have oh Hollywood.. A few hup* 
dred of these and it would be the end. Millions of people 
out of work. The failure of the whole investment. Stock* , 
holders losing their fortunes. People ’ losing their jobs. 
Me, too. • 

I turned to the professor. “Professor Smith,” I said 
slowly, “The world is not ready for this great step forward. 
We have to bring it along slowly. Pre-condition the peo- 
ple, you know,” • 

He nodded thoughtfully. “Yah,” he said, “I see vot you 
mean.” He looked around the room. “But meanvhile, 
vot should I do vit dis equipment? So much money und 
all paid for?” . . •, 

“All paid for?” I asked. I thought quickly, then without 
waiting for a confirriiing: reply. “Tell you What to do,. I 
said confidentially. “Ship the Whole works out to my place 
in Norwalk and we’ll keep it out there until the world is 
ready for it.” 

Twenty minutes later I was on the phone to my Wife. 
"Lil,” I said, “tonight you’re in for a treat. You’re going 
to see the greatest motion picture ever made.” 

After 40 Years It’s the Same Old, 
Yet New Cry In 


( Editorial note: Hollywood recently celebrated its. 50 th 
anniversary. Henry King here looks around at the situa- 
tion after a half century. The director's latest for 20th 
Century-Fox is ‘'King of the Khyber Rifles”) 

. Hollywood. 

The real pioneers of the motion pic- 
ture industry had already blazed the 
trails when I first came to Hollywood 
nearly 40 years ago. The situation in 
Hollywood when I first got here was 
something like this: , 

It was still a new but expanding — 
and tremendously exciting— industry. 
It was a business with a great fu- 
\-4ure and unbounded . horizon s. 

This was despite the fact that it was 
temporarily beset with a number of 
adversities and. threats of immediate 
w ■ - . extinction especially from competi- 

Henry » s ti ve entertainment media. 

The story-telling form of the screen was. changing and 
dynamically being adjusted to a slow but constant stream 
of new technological developments. Some of these de- 
velopments were resisted in some quarters of the indus- 
try as- being too revolutionary, as requiring prohibitive 
conversion costs, and for other reasons including simply 
the fact that they were new. 

But the industry leaders were going right on and de- 
veloping these new ideas and techniques just the same. 

Well, in every particular enumerated above, the Holly- 
wood scene hasn’t changed much in four decades. 

It’s still a new and exciting business with a tremendous 
future. It is still a business of exciting possibilities, of 
gratifying rewards to the deserving, of challenge. 

It is still beset with temporary adversities of competitive 
threats— albeit new ones— and new developments are still 
being resisted in some quarters. But the leaders are go- 
ing right ahead with progress anyway. 

In the half-century since it was born, Hollywood has 
become one of the most famous communities in the world, 
and has been compared to Mecca, Bagdad, ancient Rome 
or the other storied cities of Scriptures, lore and legend. 

Its real importance doesn’t rely on .Hollywood & Vine 
being as famous an intersection as Piccadilly Circus or 
Times Square or Unter der Linden, or the Champs-Elysees 
or Canal Street or the Bund. It lies in the fact that Holly- 
wood & Vine is still a spiritual brother to Main Street and 
Elm or any other business centre of a thriving American 

If we ever lose that bond with Main and Elm, we’ll be a 
duller city for it. And if the motion picture industry, 
which has become inseparable with the city itself, ever 
loses that touch, it will also lose its audiences. 

Last year, Holly wood turned out motion pictures costing 
in excess of $500,000,000. It paid more than $77,000,000 
in corporate taxes alone to the Government, in addition to 
being responsible for 75% of the some $330,000,000 col- 
lected in Federal theatre admission taxes. 

The U. S. Department of Commerce estimates it now has 
a capital investment of almost a whopping $3,000,000,000. 

Hollywood and the motion picture industry were born 
almost exactly at the same time. 

When H. II. Wilcox was beginning to think, possibly of 
subdividing his apricot, fig, and citrus groves seven . miles 
out of Los Angeles, in the last years of the last century, 
meh like W. K. L- Dickson, Thomas A. Edison, and George 
Eastman of Eastman Kodak were first* beginning to think 
of commercializing their fantastic new gimmick, the 
movies. At the same time that the surveyors were begin-, 
hirig to drive stakes in the ground out in the orange 
groves, the executives of the infant movie companies like 
Vitagraph, Biograph, Kalem, Melies, and Lubirt were be- 
ginning to wish that the Philadelphia skies were sunnier 
so they could get in more hours of filming. 

In Chicago the bosses of the Thanhouser, Essahay. and 
Selig studios were beginning to study weather reports 
from California and ask travelers if Los Angeles really 
had . as many sunny days per year as were reported. 

Film-makers, Wheeling Edison’s cumbersome “Black 
Marie” stage around and maneuvering to catch a little sun- 
light on the top of a New York building, were beginning 
to Wonder if there wasn’t ah easier, a pleasanter* a nicer 
and a more dependable way. 

. There was— Hollywood. , 



It’s an exciting thing to stumble on a morsel of the past 
hidden away in some forgotten pocket of time. Almost 
everybody hears of such discoveries with ah unaccountable 
lift of the spirit. 

In 1840 Major Stone happens to 
drop into a shop in Bologne to buy a 
slice of sausage. The sausage is 
wrapped, as was the custom of the 
day, in an old letter. Major Stone no- 
tices that the letter is written in Eng- 
lish. Then he reads the signature: 
James Boswell, It had been written 
by the James Boswell, Dr. Johnson’s : 
biographer. The clue leads to a col- 
lection of immensely valuable Boswell 
letters which no one knew existed. \ 

: It’s mysterious that that, .’ or Carl 
Sandburg’s discovery of the Lincoln 
letters in a barrel, should be such a 
pleasing tale. Maybe it’s simply because we all like to get 
confirmation of our belief in Buried Treasure. Or maybe 
it’s just that the sudden, unexpected survival . of the past 
strikes some chord in us. 

This seems a far cry from the Academy of Motion Pic- 
ture Arts & Sciences, but the. Academy has been going 
through an adventure vaguely similar. It concerns a long- 
forgotten by-product of the motion picture industry. 

Our siory begins in 1894. In that' year, Thomas A.. 
Edison wished to patent something connected with his new 
gadget, the motion picture camera: a roll of film called 
“The Sneeze.” There was no way to patent film, so Mr. 
Edison, being a man with a certain ingenuity, submitted 
an 8-by,-10 card on which Were printed the 45 frames of his 
celluloid movie, and received a certificate of copyright 
for “The Sneeze” . as a photograph. Until the copyright 
laws were, amended in 1912, every motion picture had to be 
submitted to the Copyright Office as series of photographs 
on paper strips. 

C harles : Brackett 

Treasure Trove 

Thus the Library of Congress had in its possession, a 
million and a half feet of 35-millimeter paper film, w'hose 
sole value at that time was evidence of copyright. Mean- 
while the actual films, on highly perishable nitrate stock, 
gradually dropped out of existence. . Most of us v know that 
unless film is given expert, and constant care, it deterio- 
rates, the emulsion cracks away, and finally it drops apart 
entirely. Only a precious few pictures were preserved by 
their owners. And the paper films, born of a necessity, 
gathered dust in the archives of the Library of Congress, 
regarded, when thought of at all, as unique and curious 
items— not motion pictures, but the mummies of motion 

The Academy stumbl e d over t he fact that these paper 
films existed, and then learned that the Library of Con- 
gress was anxious to have its paper library transferred 
back into celluloid. However, the Library lacked an ap- 
propriation for the expense involved, even though fine- 
grain film and microphotography suggested possible meth- 
ods of restoration. 

Six years ago the Academy borrowed a selection of the 
paper rolls from the Library and assumed the responsibil-. 
ily for conducting an experiment in Hollywood. Photo- 
graphing the fragile paper, much without sprocket- 
holes,’ some without frame lines, required time, patience 
and adequate financing. . Differences in thickness of the 
paper, quality of the emulsions and the original process- 
ing, complicated the problem. Some methods of trans- 
ferring the paper to 35m film were fairly successful 
mechanically, but proved too costly for a non-commercial 

Then, out of the blue, the Academy came upon a brand 
new firm, anxious to make a name for itself and willing to 
tackle the problem with a fanatic fervor. The firm, Prim- 
rose Productions, abandoned conventional equipment and 
improvised new equipment for the job. Such equipment 
literally combined among its component parts, bits' from a 
Norden bombsight, a jukebox and a pinball machine. 

This brings us up to September, 1953, at which time 
the Academy’s executive director, Mrs. Margaret Herrick, 
presented the Library of Congress with the first four rolls 
of successfully reclaimed film. The Library liked them 
and agreed to let the Academy proceed with the entire 
project of converting the paper prints to 16m film. As 
each film is reclaimed, a print will remain in the Academy 
archives, with a print and a negative going to the Library 

I 56* Year-Old Newsreel I 

On Nov. 30, 1953, both the Academy and the Library of 
Congress held a press showing of 12 of the early motion 
pictures, representing the period between 1897 and 1907. 
It was a gratifying experience to flash a 56-year-old news- 
reel on the screen — gratifying because it was the first time 
the press had seen these films, over a half-century old. 
Gratifying also because it was the first step toward filling 
the blank spaces in a photo mural that spans that half cen- 
tury. As rapidly as funds are available, the project will 
be completed. 

The twelve films shown were: Gatling Guo. Crew in 
Action, Edison, 1897; “Gatling Gun Firing by Squad,” 
Edison. 1897; “The Corset Model.” Biograph, 10.03; “The 
Way to Soli Corsets,” Biograph, 1903; “The- ■Ex-Convict.” 
Edison, 1904; “The Girl at the Window,” Biograph, 1903; 
“An Englishman's Trip to Paris from London,” Biograph, 
1904; “Great Baltimore Fire,” Biograph, 19.04; “Latina, 
Contortionist,” Biograph, 1905; “international Contest for 
the Heavyweight Championship, Squires Versus Burns.” 
Miles Bros;, 1907; “Automobile Race for the. Vsnderbill 
Cup,” Biograph. 190 o 4; and “The Inn Where No Man 
Rests,” George Melies’ 1903. 

The comedies- and dramas have the qualities of primi- 
tives. As for the news events, they are pure gold. This 
first batch of work only scratches the surface of the col- 
lection. We can look forward to scenes from the Span- 
ish-American and the Boer wars; the. Houston Flood of 
. 1900; rare shots of Teddy Roosevelt, and tragic shots of 
President McKinley just before his assassination. 

As each roll of paper film is reclaimed and returned 
to the archives of the nation, the Academy will have the 
satisfaction of having made a contribution to an important 
record of American history. . 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty •eighth Anniversary 

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with U*I’s “(jQlden Dozen” 
for the Charles J. Feldman 
Annual Drive. 

Never in this company’s 
history has there been a strong- 
er group of pictures released 
in sequence. 

Again it demonstrates 
U-I s confidence in our Indus- 
the Exhibitor, to keep on 
delivering our present high 
number of releases . . . and 
reliability of entertainment 

to please your patrons and 
keep them coming. 

Confidence . . . Responsi- 
bility . . .Reliability! 

The Charles J. Feldman 
Annual Drive gives these 
words more meaning (mean- 
ing more profits) for you than 
ever before! 

Join us for your happiest 
boxoffice New Year. 

Universal -International 

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Wednesd ay, January 6 , 1954 

Forly -eighth 




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Vr 7 By. m HOLUNGER 

Theatre’ TV marked its fith birth- 
day during 1953, but .it remained 
the industry's retarded chi d. En- 
thusiasm of proponents of the me- 
dium ^ has not. waned, however. 
T h e V s tm feel it can serve as a 
ootent sideline biz for theatres 
throughout the country once , the 
technical and programming bugs 
are ironed out; However they were 
saying just that a year -ago. 

Closed-circuit hookups were 
snowed under the avalanche of 
conversation, and concrete accom- 
plishments relating to 3-D, widi 
screen, Cinemascope arid stereo- 
T phonic sound. The problem of re 
trieving audiences via the theatres’ 
standard product — pictures — be- 
came more immediate. 

T Only 100 Equipped — 

As a result, except for temporary 
installations for, specific theatre tv 
events, not a single new permanent 
ciosed-circuit unit was. unveiled 
during the year. The number of 
theatre TV installations remains, at 
about 100, an infinitesimal number 
When compared to the. approxi- 
mately 20.000 theatres in the coun- 
try. The largest number of thea- 
tres yet corralled for a theatrie tv 
event has been 50 amd that was two 
years ago for the first . Rocky 
Marciano- Joe Walcott heavyweight 
championship fight, • 

This factor .points up the dif- 
ficulty in obtaining sufficient line 
clearances " from the . American 
Telephone & Telegraph Co. Big- 
gest complaint of the closed-circuit 
promoters has been the 1 turtle-like 
pace of the AT&T in providing and 
servicing long lines and local, 
loops. Frequent attempts have been 
made to lick this bottleneck and 
the objective was one of the prime 
aims of .the National Theatre Tele- 
vision Exhibitors Committee in ap- 
pealing to the Federal Communi- 
. cations Commission for separate | 
theatre bands. While the FCC did 
not grant this request, theatres re- 
ceived assurance that the lines 
would be available once the me- 
dium operated on a more or less 
regular bas'is. 

There were only two attractions 
available to theatres during the 
past year—both in the field of 
sports. A lineup of 45 theatres with 
New York and New England 
blacked out was obtained for the 
Rocky Mareiario-Roiand LaStarza 
heavyweight championship fight on 
Sept. 24. This Nate Halpern Thea- 
tre Network Television event 
grossed about $300,000, with thea- 
tres charging $2.50 to $4.80. Sec- 
ond attraction, a series \ of five 
Notre Dame - football games pre- 
sented on Saturday afternoons dur- 
ing the fall, brought in a total of 
«bout $65,000. The lineup of thea- 
ties varied from eight to a peak of 

2 with the admission charges 
ranging f rom _85e to $9 an 

L I^bt s of BigT alk 

nJ h ^^ ridcasts were offered by 
Box Office Television, Inc., which 

fni C1 i C o-i he clo -ed-circuit field dur- 
*^TV, headed by at- 
t°mey Milton Mound, 

elosed-drcuit subsidiary. No sooner 
naq. it grandiosely announced its 
intention to present a sehies of 
weekly boxing, bouts and to pro- 
mote sales meetings via the me- 
ciiuiii (hdn it disbanded thfe project. 

Also established during the year 
was Stadium Network Television 
an outfit headed by Ed Dorfman 
which had as its objective the 
presentation of., theatre-. tv events 
in ballparks. Two other .firms— 
TelerConference and Closed-Cir- 
cuit Television Co.— were conspicu- 
ous by their silence. 

One of the prime objectives of 
the medium, eyed by exhibitors as 
well as the promoters, is use of the 
medium during theatre off-hours, 
especially for business and indus- 
try use for sales meetings, etc. 
Both industry’s reluctance to try 
something new and the lack of big 
screen color have been the factors 
that have delayed the advance of 
this project. The color problem is 
on its way to solution and may be 
one of the major advances theatre 
tv will make during 1954. RCA, 
General Precision and 20th-Fox, 
latter with Eidophor, are expected 
to push developments in this field, 
during the corning year. 

Business use of the medium, al- j 
though dormant sin c e TNT’s 

Gentiemen Prefer Blondes,” 
Shane, youse of Wax,” etc. But 
it is still the poor man’s entertain- 
ment when you consider that our 
normal admission price is 70c in- 
cluding tax, and our increase—- 
with the exception of ”The Robe”— 
has been around 95e including tax, 
and in some instances plus three- 
dimension glasses. 

. On Dec. 1, in my local garage, 
they raised rhy daily parking rale 
from 60c to 70c. Not too long ago 
it \vas 40c. ; How can anybody Ob- 
ject to paying 80c or $1 for a great 
evening in a: theatre when 



‘•You gotta 
and the right 



a sec- 
charges al- 
parking an 

the right tune 
tempo in literature 
! and movies to turn but a true west- 
! ern,” in the opinion of j. Frank 
Dobic, erstwhile professor of Eng- 
lish at Texas University and author 
of such books .as ‘'The Voice of 
the Coyote” and ‘‘The Mustangs." 

Dobie appeared here in a one- 
night stand at the University of 
Arizona where "The Cowboy in 
Literature" was the. topic of a Sun- 
day .evening; Gathered in the tre- 
mendous stadium-effect auditorium 
of the University, whose stage is 
almost, if not as large as. Radio 

in New York. 

parking lot 
most that much for 
automobile for a day? 

; With reference to widescrecns, 
it is not niy opinion that Clnema- 
Scope is applicable to air pictures, 
nor would I care to see it that way. 

It has been my hope that we would 
have an all-purpose screen and an 
all-purpose theatre. By that, I 
mean that each week we. could put, 
plenty ol' exciting advertising and ,| ]f 

showmanship in our publicity.— not i ■ ■ ^ s Music Hall 
just showing a standard motion ! were more than 1,000 listeners and 
picture, but appealing to the pub- j c urious who turned out to see Svhat 
lie by showing a Cinemascope one the Texan historian of the western 
week, a three-dimension the nqxt,.! 100 ^ llke an <l "hat he had to 
and perhaps a widescreen and : -^^y- 

stereophonic sound attraction next I Shocked with a goodly crop of 
week. This would put our man- , white hair, Dobie could pass olf 
agement and advertising depart- i as a second Will Rogers . lie has 
ments on their toes and get us out ' the drawl, the mien, the unruly 

1? a l ^ . .'i. _ a. ' , ii • . 'fc/* 1 . , , ' 1 • ' ' - 

guns; and the cattle are running 
from the time they leave the range 
until they get to Canada.” The 
only film he saw that was any good, 
the author stated, was "North 36,” 
a mute drama. He admitted he 
only goes to see those westerns 
"advertised as masterpieces,” and 
there haven’t been many such ad- 
vertise^,*^.; - 

/Another thing about western 
films, according to Dobie, is that 
in all the traveling the cows do, 
"it is very rare they stop for grass 
or . water land I can’t even read 
their brands. 'Git Along Little 
Dogie’ has been sung and played 
so much it’s become. a Texas lulla- 
by e. 

"The touchstone for all kinds of 
literature is the use of the right 
words and the right tune, the right 
tone and the ; right time." He 
pointed to specific examples of 
Mark Twain and Zane Grey, com- 
menting that "Twain’s wjfe.Livvy, 
tried on several occasions to repeat 
the slang used by her husband in 
his books but couldn't She got 

manner. Certainly, different types great humorist whose "All J know 
of pictures lend themselves to dif- i is what I read in the papers'’ w as 
.ferent types of exciting copy. j his calling card. 

As you know; Dallas was one of “The popular Hollywood cow- 

presentation of a Lees Carnots ! the guinea pigs for "Kiss Me Kate” hoy,” Dobie declared, "never . walks 

. . ■ ' ■ r’ *' I | .4 L H/\A #1 S'VV« J\ *1% A* A M •• k M-.1 T J 1 ! 4 U MA • « #r L ' A #1 A AM i • A-’ ' t A n a' i .4. - 

meeting last year, appears headed 
for a comeback in 1954, with two 
business, meetings scheduled for 
this month. TNT, is staging a 16- 
Theatre confab for the Sealtest 
Division of the National Dairy 
Products Corp. on Jan. 22 while 
BOTV will present a 31 -city meet- 
ing for o the Ford Motor Co. on 
Jan. 28. 

Thinks Fewer But 

Theatres Alive 



/Continued on 

and I do 
page 56) 

be- through a door but jumps dut a 
* window; he is always shooting two 

of the rut. of selling 52 attractions ! wave flowing over his brow and all j the right . words but the wrong . 
in 52 .weeks in almost an identical the general mannerisms of the late j tune.” 

As for Zane Grey, Dobie added, 
"He had his hired hands put on 
local color for his books. Gone; 
these many years. Ris books are 
still coming out. He provided his 
secretary with enough stories for 
a lifetime; He doesn't have the 
right time for the tune in his 

.During the talk, Dobie made use 
of all the mannerisms of Will 
Rogers, adding a drawling pun 
here and there to eke a laugh out 
of his audience. He is sharp and 
keen-witted' and shifted his balance 
from time to time for an easy 
stance - before the music stand. He 
read from notes and embellished 
them from memory. His stage su- 
'd! ence was as spellbound as the 
• visitors out front. At least they 
appeared as such, including Mary 
: I..- Jeffries, forum director. Who 
drew the centre gold chair behind 
the footlights. ' • 


< President, Skiatron ) 

nn ... , — ‘talking” 

an ambitious program of 30 closed- 

2" 9^*nts annually including 
oL... s ' ^*'oadway plays, music 
222 n d con . ccrls - To encourage 
unit e |!nJ,° : install closed-circuit 
norm/^°T V ls 0< T ei *ing units, both 
rei '? • and Posable, -on a 
rnand n! >aS,S '.' 1Iowc vor, it is dc- 
onV S1,c i , lenta l payments for 
a) tsfv ,ir 111 ;ulv ance. For. example, 
comrln’ 1 ' ^ asking theatres 
fits In lhSi J ° r lhe ' Portable.. out-; 
ingfoi-'m'o out . $1 ’ 500 when sign-. 
u i hc sp rvice. 

. HalporH's TNT and Mound’s 
PhitnL /-pP^seht two different 
Pertaining to the 
the noi medium. TNT .favors 

naiionnf S1()nal outstandin 6 event of 
Ss l while. BOTV 

as a 2 va4d , a contin uity of events 
On tl p G ' r ; s , t0 - buil . d the. medium, 
“occasin 2 S1S of b ' d ’ receipts, the 
have P eople seeni t() 

that > n fi cd , 11 lHMP cl aim so far 

d ° WZSo2 big faction to 
TN’T and BOTV 

in present' 1 bave succeeded 

been X ^" lg u ev , ents; There 


ace the only pro- 

)lvn f.vj ^ un-CMipicu io 

- ticl.d, but their efforts 

onlv 2.2 ns i sted of conversa- 
the^ bust the year 

Ronald & , .Moo- 

tf ms u 1 1 n «.T °” thd ' Bay to n , O. sales 

tonsuitanr.,; 5 ^ayton, o. sales 
■Theatrp--Tni a ^ c . ncjr * "hich formed 
1 1 vision Associates as a 


In my opinion, fewer but bigger 
pictures could keep the big city 
theatres alive; for today, I think, 
the weekly same opening day, year 
in and year out, is a thing of the 
past. Cities from 250,000 up. must 
be flexible and exploit every bit of 
amusement income before indis- 
criminately changing shows every i 
seven days. However, these are; 
not the theatres that are. most in \ 
jeopardy. It is the three-and-four^ \ 
change-a-week theatres and the , 
split-week theatres that are a prob- i 
iem, although in 'our situation we | 
have been for many months cx- , 
tending the three-day runs to four , 
and five days; the four days to ; 
seven days; and the two-day to 
three-days— and attempting to get 
the money out of the better at- 

The equipment migraine in our 
situation is no particular headache, 
as we jumped the gun last spring | 
and have completely equipped for 
widescreen and stereophonic sound 
more than 80 of our 100 theatres. 
We have attempted to secure the 
best all-purpose screen, and be- 
lieve we have done this. But our 
ideas of a fine, all-purpose screen! 
do not, in every instance, agree i 
with the thinking of one pioneer 
in Cinemascope who shall be 
nameless. 1 , 

., We would not trade for anything 
in the world our, experiences in the 
past six months, which included a 
most active and successful summer 
wherein we emphasized widescreen -i 
and stereophonic sound. We have 
found it well worth the gamble, , 
despite the fact that in 38 sets of 
Our. RCA equipment w<? have an 
extra sound-head that will be ob- 
solete; when and v as all companies 
go to the four-track sdund-on-film. 
Writing this off will be a bit bur- 
densome but we believe it has 
proven our point during the past 

Radical changes have taken place 
in the thinking of the film indus- 
try in relation to subscription tele- 
vision. And the film people are 

1 not. the only ones to see the poten- 
tials of tollviewing. We have , been 
eorit acted by leaders from many 
fields, frpm doctors, scientists and 
: educators to important figures in 
the world of sports and the legiti- 
mate theatre, and even by heads 
of theatre circuits. 

Even though, the Federal. Com- 
munications Commission has yet to 
make up its mind where pav-as- 
you-see television fits into the 
developing broadcasting pattern, 
subscription TV is already a re- 
ality in the minds of a great many 
of the policy-making executives. 
Never before has there been such . 
intense interest in Subscriber-vi- i 
Sion, sueli determination to ex- 
amine every aspect of the miethod 
for its potential as the cheapest, 
most effective way of establishing 
a box-office in the. home. 

To a very considerable extent, 
the march of events during the past 
year has pinpointed the need lor 
tollvision. The economics of com- 
mercial telecasting are such that 
even the broadcasters themselves, 
who might be considered having a 
vested interest in the status quo. 
are no longer shutting their eyes 
to the simple truth that they have 
reached the saturation point in 
programming quality under the 
prevailing sponsor-telecaster rela- 
tionship. Today, subscription tele- 
vision is no longer in a position of 
trying to force itself on an unwill- 
ing industry. Events during 1953 
have proven conclusively that . if 
TV broadcasting is to survive and 
prosper, i( must broaden its bask 
to; take in pay-as-you-see telecast- 
ing. Resisting it not only defies 
economic logic, it is merely delay- 
ing the inevitable. 

The film people are watching! 
the spectre of color /TV over the 
horizon. It doesn't lake much 
, imagination to figure put what this 
I could mean to those millions upon 
millions of dollars worth of black-- 
1 and-whitc negatives now crowding 
the vaults. These pictures 'arc -being 

summer, as it has always been: our .hcW back with, tlie optimistic hope 

aim and ambition to keep abreast 
of the times and to attempt, in our 
theatres, to give the last word in 
entertainment, We feel that if we 
had not installed stereophonic 
sound an all-purpose screens and 
every facility for three-dimension 
pictures, we would have been 
derelict in oiir duty. 

We have been guilty of juggling 
our prices in Texas, and raising 
them for outstanding attractions 

that the day may come when some 
J television sponsor will fork over a 
I. sum large enough to compensate 
1 producers lor their investment/' 
Hollywood, in its Search for 
greater revenue, has gone to a 
wider screen. Here again, the re- 
I issue value of ordinary pix is de- 
pressed. What will happen to those 
millions 6f feet of standard film 
that the companies will no longer 
be able to sell? As presently con- 

such as "From Here to Eternity," j stituted, television cannot pay 

enough to suit the studios. And 
even if all the producers v. ere to 
dump their product — as some tear 
they may — the only effect this 
would have would be. to drop the 
bottom out of the market. 

The film industry has begun to 
realize that Subscriber-Vision of- 
fers an electronic distribution sys- 
tem to many niillions of TV homes, 
which will eventually permit a high 
quality film to gross $6-S7,000.060 
in a single evening. 

Our 10-day test of Subscriber- 
Vision in New .York last June 
proved conclusively not only how 
well our system works, hut. equally 
important, that more than 90 r r of 
all set-owners, would be willing to 
pay for superior TV entertainment 
alongside the regular sponsored, 

Our. method, involving transmis- 
sion of a' coded signal which is 
unscrambled at the home seLJby 
dint of a small, compact decoder, 
lias been developed and improved 
over the past three years in tests 
authorized by the FCC. and held in 
conjunction with WOR-TV in New- 
York. All of the FCC Commission- 
ers. together With the chiefs of the 
legal and engineering departments, 
came from Washington last year 
to witness Subscriber-Vision and 
expressed themselves as deeply 
impressed with the system. 

We are going to the FCC shortly, 
with an application for a eommer- 
■•■eial tollcasting license in metro- 
politan New York, We expect that, 
within 18 months of obtaining FCC 
approval, we will have installed at 
least 500.000 decoders in the 
metropolitan area. wher p nearly 
4.000,000 sets are already in use. 
Manufacturers have assured us 
that they stand ready to swing into 
production of; the. /decoders al most 
as soon as the FCC act*, and we are 
prepared to : license t hem under 
our patents. 

The cost of tiie decoders will he 
quite small in mass production. 
Following FCC approval, we as- 
pect to implement- a coopeiatR^ 
arrangement with Western Unjpn 
which wiil. process all subscription 
applications, including billing and 
accounting, etc. 

Installation of our decoders is 
so simple, it should cost no more, 
than about $2,50. Uowcyer. our 
present, thinking is not to charge 
pur subscribers either for the de- 
coders nor for the installation 
since we hope to amortize the cost 
out of our eventual subscription 

We . feel assured that-,, once the 
FCC lias approved toll.casting the 
entire broadcasting industry Will 
be revitalized along w ith a I lied en- 
tertainment industries. 

Literary Hopalongs 


"Cowboys read Police Gazette 
then as they do Life today,". Dobie 

When asked whether the real 
cowboy was disappearing, the Tex- 
an novelist and authority on Lone 
Star -lore answ ered, "I don’t think 
so. More cowboys are wearing 
i spurs in cars .than on horses, There 
; is something about living in ma- 
1 chines that fascinates^niem.” ■ 

\ Dobie. went on to sav that, in 
his opinion. "The Virginian’’ by 
Owen Wister is the most popular 
light novel, in the last century. 
/Not a cow boy or cow is mentioned 
. in the book. It has no cow psy- 
i cliology and. it has left an indelible 
impression on the mind of the 
public. So much so. there has be- 
■ come an American saying. 'When 
you call me a Virginian, smile." he 
| draw led. 

I In early hooks, all cowboys were 
witty and lantern-jawed men. They . 
were called lifters and Cow’ Bo\ s 
because they attended eowsi and 
most of the yarns dealt with cattle 
thieves, Dobie declared. He drew 
a verbal picture of the inception 
of the cow boy to present-day liter- 

One of the best cowboy liter- 
ature which reveals the natural life 
on the trail which is slow and 
provides natural cowboy talk is 
Andy Adams’. "The Log of the 
Cow .boy,” lie Said. "There.' are no 
women in this book,” Dobie added, 
"and when Adams was advised to 
put a woman and love story in the 
book to make it popular, lie re- 
fused slating he had never seen a. 
/woman on the trail and if she had 
been there she 'would- have only 
. been in the way. There is shooting 
i and one drowning and true-to-life. 

It lias the right lone and the right 
: tempo, and 40 c ,o of the book deals 
w ith anecdotes and ■ natural set- 
tings,” he said. 

In eo'ncltrding. Dobie told of . 
visiting small towns where there 
were two film show’s a week and . 
all he could see advertised were 
westerns.” The popularity of • the 
western movies in Europe and 
Japan can be accounted for as in 
the small towns of the west. These 
pictures are a travesty on. life, but 
apparently the range people like 
them. . ' 

"In . time all cowboys will be 
modeled after Hollywood.” 

Forty-eighth I^BSIETy Annwertary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 




IN 1954 


■J .. 



Wtdnwafcy* January 6, 1954 

Forty -eighth P'jKRIET Y Anniversary 


by Nicholas' Monserrat 

Jack Hawkins Donald Sindan 

Denholm Elliott Virginia McKanha 

Producer: Laslio Norman 
Diroctpr:Cherlft Frond 
: A Michael Balcon Production 


Colour by Technicolor . 

Dinah Sheridan John Grogion 

Kay Kendall Kenneth More 

Produced, and directed by Hf nry Cornelius 


Colour by EestmanColour 
Jack Hawkins . Glynis. Johns 
Noel Purcell Inia Ti Wiata 

Producer: George Brown 
Director: Ken Annakin 


Colour by Technicolor 

Stanley Holloway . George Ralph 
Naunton Wayne John Gregson 

Producer: Michael Truman 
Director: Charles Crichton 
A Michael 2 Balcon Production 



Colour by Technicolor 
Donald Sinden Akim Tamiroff 

Sarah Lawson Naunton Wayne 

Producers: Julian Wihtle and Pater Rogers 
Director: Ken Annakin 


Colour by Technicolor 
Dirk Bogarde Muriel Parlow 

Kenneth More Donald. Sinden 

Producer: Betty Box 
Director: Ralph Thomas 


Nigel Patrick Joan Coliins 

Terence Morgan Jack Warner 

Greta Gynt 
Producer: Sydney Box 
Director: Harold French 


Colour by Technicolor 
Robert Morley Kay Walsh 

Edward Underdown Bill Owen 

Producer: Michael Ralph 
Director: Basil Dearden 
A Michael Balcon Production . 


by Mark. Twain 
Colour by Technicolor 
_ ’ Gregory Peck 

• Ronald Squire Jane Griffiths 

Producer: John Bryan 
Director: Ronald Neame 


Gene Tierney Leo Genn 

Glynis Johns 

Producer.: Antony Darnborough 
Director: Anthony Palmier 


by William Shakespeare 
Colour by Technicolor 
Laurence Harvey Susan ShehteJI 

Flora Robson Norman. Wooland 

Producers: Sandro Ghenzi. end Joseph Janni 
Director: Reneto Castellan! 


Colour by Technicolor 
David Niven Peggy .Cummins 

Herbert Lorn Anne Vernon 

Producer: . Monja Danitchewtky . 

Director: Charles Crichton 
A Michael Bel con Production 


Stanley Holloway Peggy Cummins 

Kay Kendall Barbara Murray 

Producer: Monja Danischewsky 
Director: !■ Anthony Pelissier 
A Michael Balcon Production 


Norman Wisdom Margaret Rutherford. 

Moira Lister Derek Bond 

Producer: Maurice Cowan 
Director: John Paddy Cersteirs 


Colour by Technicolor 

Glynis Johns Robert Newton 

Donald Sinden 

Producer: William MecQuitty 
Director: Muriel Box 


Phyllis Calvert James Donald 

Robert Beatty Herbert Lorn 

Producer: Antony Darnborough 
Director: Anthony Asquith 


Colour by Technicolor 
Anthony Steel Sheila Sim 

Producer: Leslie Norman 
Director: Harry Watt 
A Mich ae I Bal con Production 


Paul Douglas Dorothy Alison 

! Producer: Michael Truman 
Director: Alexander MacKendrick 
A Michael Balcon Production 


Alec Guinness Jack Hawkins 

Anthony Steel: Muriel Pavlpw 

/Producer: Peter deSerigny 
Director: Brian Desmond Hurst 


Peggy Cummins Terence Morgan 
Ronald Squirt 
Producer: Robert Garrett 
Director: Ralph Smart 


Jack Warner Robert Beatty 

Maxwell Reed : : Joan Collins 
Kay Kendall 

Producer: Michael Ralph. . 

. Director: Basil Dearden 
A Michael Balcon Production 


Yvonne Mitchell Terence Morgan 

Joan Collins Kathleen Harrison 

Producer: Maurice Cow*n 
Director: Jack Lee 


Duncan Macrae Adrienne CorrJ 

Producers: ■ Se r g< Nolbandov and . Leslie Parkyn 
Director: Philip . Leacock- 


Stanley Holloway Kay Kendall 
. Brian Reece ■ 

Prpducer: teddy Baird 
Dir/ector: Gordon Parry. 


Anne Crawford Peggy Cummins 

Rosamund) John Terence Morgan 

Prpducer: William Ma.cQviit+y 
Director: Muriel Bo* 


Stanley Holloway Versois 
James Heyter 

Producer: Betty Box 

Joan Rice 
Donald Sinden 
Vernon Gray , 
Director: Relph;Themat 


Dirk Bogarde Mai Zetterling. 

Philip Friend Albert Lieven 

Producer: George H. Brown 
Director: Compton Bennett 


John Mills Dirk Bogarde 

Robert Beetty Elizabeth Sellar* 

Producer: Michael Ralph 
Director: Basil Dearden 
A Michael Balcon Production 



Forty-eighth P^RtEfY Anniversary 

Wednesday January 6, 195| 


(Sex On The Screen) 




■ (Executive Producer, Columbia Pictures) 

. Hollywood, 

Sex not only helps make the world go around ( as-poets - 
and composers have told us), but sex also keeps pix pro- 
jectors revolving in theatres from Broadway to Burma. 
Sex, it is said, and not silver nitrate, is the chief ingredient 

of motion picture film. If . this is so, 
then onemiay well ask, How has Holly- 
wood .^ndled sex? 

What is. essentially a very: difficult 
question has been given many easy 
answers. Nowhere is Hollywood more 
vulnerable than in the realm of sex 
and passion, and the attack upon the 
screen ! and upon movie makers dates 
back almost to the time when Thomas 
. Alva Edison turned his first crank 

, ___CriJtLcs-olJJie_aQceen a te^apLLo for- 

' get that home audiences see as many 
jerry Wald stories of love, unrequited love, pas- 
sion, marital contentment and sheer animal attraction in 
one week of television viewing as they are apt to get in 
three months of moviegoing; Yet despite this concen- 
trated dose of sex at home, interrupted only by. special 
pleadings for cake mixes and beauty applications, the 
movie screen and the movie industry have been burdened 
with the onus of offending public morals in matters con- 
cerning sex. For almost all of its history, the movies have 
constituted an "open season” for the moralists, the watch* 
and- wards, the Comstocks of American society. 

In 1896, two years after the first public exhibition of 
filin. two stage performers. May Irwin and John C. Rice, 
posed for a kiss interlude which delighted some and. 
shocked others. The kiss itself, was lifted from a scene 
in the plav in which the two performers were then appear- 
ing. "The Widow Jones,” and although there was no hue 
and outcry against the stage perf o.ntrance^tltere-w‘as-con^— 
siderabie agitation— about up on the. screen,.. jand_pne_ 
Chicago newspaper editor referred to this friendly bliss as 
“no better than a lyric Of the stockyards." It sliould : have 
been obvious even to the earliest pioneers of this infant 
entertainment medium, that the movies were “in for it.” 
Even such eminent and. clear-thinking historians as Charles 
and Mary Beard joined the attackers of the silver screen, 
charging the movies with debasing the moral fibre of 
America: . 

| A F orce for t he Go, '! 

.It. is mv sincere conviction that during the past 50 years 
• the movies, in many respects, have seyveC o raise the level 
of public taste not only in the realm of lii- physical appur- 
tenances of daily living, but in the realm of ideas and 
ideals as well. It is also my belief that the movies have 
performed an exemplary service in the c ireful handling 
of. sex on the screen. There have been, of course, excep- 
tions; but these, exceptions have been at a minimum and 
have earned the same degree of reproach from Hollywood, 

. which they earned at the hands of the public. The movies 
have mirrored the temper of the tiems in morals and 
mores, and, if anything, have actually anticipated the trend 
of attitudes toward sexual relationships. The movies have 
not created . moral values, nor debased them, nor under- 
mined them. 

In an industry which has produced some 25,000 mature 
length pictures in 50-odd years of its history, it w uld be 
unusual, to say the least, to discover that a few n these 
have offended public morals and good taste, in.clud' by 
the. way. the' taste of Hollywood and serious film-makvcs as 
well. The attributed immorality or a-morality whicMThas 
been fastened upon the picture industry is no monopoly at 
all, when one considers the publishers and their comic 
books and lurid book jackets, and the theatrical producers 
and their revues, their burlesques and some of their three- 
act dramas. This consideration is not noted here as either 
a justification or ah apologia; the point is that pix have 
been more subject to censorship and scrutiny; films are 
more immediate to their audiences and therefore more 
vulnerable; movies deal with live images, and being more 
immediate are, generally, the first point, of attack. There 
has been justified and temperate criticism of the content 
of motion pictures, and in these instances producers and 
the industry have worked for improvement. 

There is no reason why the celebrated for infamous in 
its day ) Irwin-Rice kiss should have raised such a storm of 
protest except for the fact that it was a daring hovelty. 
Kissing had been evinced in’ .Shakespeare, in the robust 
Restoration Comedies, and even in the theatre of the Kem- 
bles and the Booths. Sex on the American screen, in fact, 
had a dry, puritanical aura to it for at least the first two 
decades of film history, and romance— was-best— expressed— 
in the pollyanna school of fingertip-touching romance. 

This was the period when the heroine inevitably had 
long, golden curls, wore a Wide-brimmed hat* and strolled 
into the sunset with “The Boy” to eternal happiness or its 
1910 equivalent. American womanhood— girlhood would 
be more appropriate— was personified in the lovable roles 
which Mary Pickford portrayed to delighted audiences. 
Sex manifested itself generally in hand-holding and was 
never the central problem of any story. 

It was World War I which wrought almost overnight 
changes in the moral attitudes of the people of America. 
America had been canvassing for the politically emanci- 
pated woman since the Civil War and the Susan B. A n- 
thonyXrusade for suffrage. The campaign for the Sexually 
em^^cipejted woman began when the boys came home from 
Paree, when the hemlines started to climb, and the cigaret 
holders began to appear. “The America of the beginning 
of the last decade (1920-30 ),” writes James Truslow Adams 
in "The Epic of .America” (1933), "was a very different 
one from that which had entered World War I. The ideal- 
ism that had been rapidly making progress in accomplish* 
inenl under Roosevelt and' under Wilson in hi$ first. term 
had\ largely disappeared. A certain recklessness had taken . 
its place. ’ This recklessness was an aftermath of l he 
war, a moral backwash as some historians have called it, 
and the movies went about the business 6f reflecting the 
tenor of those days. 

There were two pictures which blasted away the two 
preceding trends— the age of innocence, and the saga of 
the vampire-^and these were “The Miracle Man” and 
Male, and Femaje,” both produced in 1919. “The Miracle 
Man w ith Thomas Meighan exploited the growing order 

of the gangster; “Male aind Female,*' . based on Barrie’s 
play, “Admirable . Crichton,” co-starri ng Meighan a n d 
Gloria Swanson (.who had had a rather short run as a 
vamp herself) dealt with the intimate love story of a 
lady of quality and her butler on a desert island. The 
story .flouted moral ' conventions, dealt in. sophisticated 
fashion With problems of illicit love, and was as open in 
its defiance pf the pre-war moral status quo as America's 
flourishing racketeering, as revolutionary as the new era 
of jazz, and as flaunting of traditions as the newly created 
Prohibition era drinkers. ' 

Cecil B. DeMille followed with Other pictures in the 
same vein, including “Don’t Change Your Husband,” “For 
Better or Worse,” and “Forbidden Fruit,” all stressing sex 
and moral emancipation. Naturally, he had imitators who 
tackled the same theme with varying degrees of taste and 
license. But the trend toward this new attitude toward sex 
on the screen had it s counterpart in other phas e s of Amer- 
ican life. “DeMille’s imitators,” Ruth Inglis writes "In ' 
“Freedom of the Movies” (Chicago U. Press, 1947), “were 
even less subtle, and pictures defying the old-fashioned 
canons of decency and morality, became as common as the 
contemporary novels and plays in similar vein.” 

| Nainby-P abliun Pix j 

If American movies are to share; any kind of guilt at 
all, then conceivably it ihight be for perpetuating the 
girly-girly myth about American womanhood. Long after 
the “Down East” and the “Pollyanna” school of motion 
pictures had passed public vogue, there were producers 
and filmmakers who persisted in offering the public this 
pabluin-loaded view of the relationship between meh and 
women. As one looks back at pictures of that era, the 
sacrosanct era Of sex, one gets the feeling that unlikely 
children, dressed up in adults' clothes, were playing at 
lovemaking. The hero invariably chased the heroine 
-thrwigh-some-backlot sylvan glade and finally caught her 
’neath a weeping willow; the heroine dropped her eyes 
when the hero went after fiiT-re warST Toss ; and~wRen he' 
forced himself to a point of proposal he dropped to one 
knee and rapped his chest manfully. 

The early Mary Pickford pictures and Charles Ray films 
Cupid-bow lips — when razzy, jazzy Clara Bow and ‘It’ burst 
upon the screen. American audiences awakened to sex by 
the aftermath of World War I were delighted with what 
they saw. 

* * * 

The flapper era offered moviegoers a new view of . the 
American woman as the rolled-stocking, hipflask-toting, 
bobbed-hair hoyden. The flapper era also made discussion 
about sex socially acceptable in quarters where it had 
never even been whispered before. But Clara Bow’s pic- 
tures and Sue Carol’s may have, asked questions about 
sex, but never attempted to answer them. “Sex is here to 
stay,” was a contemporary wisecrack. But no attempt was 
made to explain what sex was and how it Operated. 

“Sex is sin” has been a prevalent view in many parts of 
American life. In the early days of the screen, when sex 
exhibited itself on the screen, aside from the already re- 
ferred to idyllic concept of fingertip-touching romance, it 
was portrayed as evil— the vampires, the illicit lovers, the 
cycle started by Cecil B. DeMille with his production 
“Male and Female.” The vampire school shocked its audi- 
ence, but it was superficial. The flapper school was a 
shock, but it, too, was superficial. The fatal female, tribe— 
Garbo, Dietrich, Lamarr, Swanson— made the first hesitant 
steps toward exploring the anatomy of love. 

Interestingly enough the Garbo type, the, neurotic, 
introspective lover so well exemplified in the actress’ por- 
trayal of “Anna Karenina” or “Camille,” had its begin- 
ning with that cycle which began with the great “Latin 
Lover”- — Rudolph Valentino. Valentino was the male 
counterpart to the Bara vamp. Valentiho had many imita- 
tors and successors— Rod LaRocque, John Gilbert, Ricardo 
Cortez, Antonio Moreno, Gilbert Roland, Ramon Novarro— 
all men whose performances showed them to be practiced 
in the arts of love. Their counterparts were to be found 
in the “rough-em-up” school of lovers— James Cagney, 
Edward G. Robinson, Charles Bickford, Clark Gable; 

| Don’t Talk It to Death | 

When the movies were silent,!, if our hero wanted, to 
make known his love, he generally offered his lady a 
freshly plucked rose, and clasping his free had to his 
bosom/ gesticulated, expressions of adoration. She, on the 
other hand, bowed her head with benign satisfaction and . 
a carefully manufactured shyness which reflected pro- 
priety as well as acceptance. 

refined the art of silent love-making to something more 
subtle, more realistic and more natural. Although we 
might characterize her performance today as something 
overdone., by comparison with what had gone on before 
she was subtle. 

But sound was to prove very devilish, in its develop- 
ments. One could hear "I love you” enunciated just so 
many times, before it grew wearisome. And the more 
talky these love sequences grew, the more annoyed were 
the paying customers. Human passion is not ah emotion 
which is discoursed about by the participants, as any man 
or woman in love will freely attest. . Movie* makers now 
faced the problem of reflecting proper sex mores, without 
talking audiences to death. 

Motion picture producers are men extremely sensitive 
to public reaction. No producer within my knowledge has 
ever knowingly sought to offend public sensibilities. No 
producer has ever knowingly made a picture which he 
even thought would flaunt public acceptance. Some pro- 
ducers have made pictures in advance of prevailing Holly- 
wood notions on sex and morality;, but never in advance 
of public mores. 

The cardinal rifle of picture making is never to offend 
the innocent or frustrate the intelligent. Contrary to 
populai’ belief, the Motion Pictii re Producers’ Code is not • 
simply a guide to express prohibitions; it is a compendium 
of common sense and good taste. The critic who fancies 
himself a realist says Hollywood never treats the subject 
of illicit love, because of prohibitions of the Code. This is 
not true. The relationship between Deborah Kerr and 
- B ur t • . • .Lancaster- in “From- Here- to- Eternity^ -was,- -first, 
adult; and, second, very natural. In the screen version 

B vr Llilt I lull LlLDnLL (] 


I have been In Europe for many months. I have r «: 
turned to find my infant 3-D already buried and a Ireadv 
resurrected. I have come back to screens that have 
widened. I have returned to a most complicated motion 
__ : _. L . picture world of Unistrut curvaceous 

screens, Lenticular polaroids, intet- 
locks, Lucky Seven Magic-Vuers 

Nprd-bn-one-strlp, anamorphic lenses’ 

nPt to speak of front, back and sicks 
ways Altec speakers, quadruple, mac. 
nets on the soundheads, Ki tie vox 
Stancil and N.T.S., with Matty Fox 
in the .middle, and whose ratio, is on 

Gentlemen of science, promotion 
. and merchandising, enough is enough) 

I recently attended the Chicago ToA 
Arch oboier meeting and am still bleeding for lh e 

• • M r TOA-ers. There won’t be enough psy. 

clflatrists invented even in Russia to take care of thein. 
Between off-angle filters, and th e bank*wori’t-16an-f»r-n<‘u/ 
projection-lenses, "and rental glasses weren’t sterilized, 
and Max next door won’t let them have the. back where ne ' 
sleeps so that the new screen can be spread out — well, as 
I said, enough is enough! 

So out of the wisdom that I have accumulated from a ' 
careful study, these months abroad, of the techniques of 
those ancient exhibitors and show business scientists., 
da Vinci and Michelangelo, I have a simple solution 
which solves all. 

It goes like this — since the new techniques of the motion 
picture business are having-difficulty adapting themselves 
to the public, why not adapt the public to the new tech- 
niques? . . ! 

We will start with true three-dimension. Since, by now, 
everybody knows that you can’t get true 3-D without 
glasses, let’s eliminate the glasses by polarizing the cus- 
tomers. John Dreyer, the eminent scientist of Blue Ash, 
Ohio, has excellent p olarizing solutions which cou ld be 
sprayed left eye, right eye into the customer’s optics as he 

enters... — .. _ — — . — , -- — - — . — - — .- 

With the problem of the glasses so neatly solved, let us . 
attack, with equal forthrightness, the matter of wide- 
screens. How ridiculous to expect each exhibitor to have 
a variable masker which; almost reel to reel, shivers out- 
ward or inward to compensate for a palpitating picture 

If Cinemascope is here to stay the answer, again, lies 
not in the theatre but with the public. 

My solution for CinemaScope, then, is a simple opera- 
tion which permits the squeezed CinemaScope picture to 
be projected un-unsqueezed on a normal screen, arid with 
the compensation for the squeezing taking place right 'in'" 
the viewer’s eyes. 

Can Get It for You Wholesale | 

I’ve consulted a local charlatan, well versed in whole- 
sale operations of all sorts, and he tells me that, on a mass 
operation basis, an anarnorphic-type viewing lens can be 
inserted into the human eyeball, in plastic, at something 
under $5 per operation, including the towels. 

In. my “Cut-Up The Customer” solution to the motion 
picture industry's mechanical problems, I’ve also consid- 
ered the problem of Cinerama. Cinerama is a special case, 
since the true wrap-arpund screen is really hard to engi- 
neer internally. 

• This now becomes a matter of eugenics; in other words, 
we must scientifically culture a “customeriens sapiens” , 
over a number of generations who is hereditarily able to 
resolve the Reeves-Waller wonder-flicker. 

I hear soft objections from Exhibitor Marc Wolf. My 
dear Mr. Wolf, if you think it is impossible to develop a 
human being with an eyeball that reaches back to his ear- 
drums, consider what has been done with goldfish, Com- 
pare the miracle of the goggle-eyed, multifinned fantail, 
shining in-iridescent Technicolor, to the fish from 'which 
it originated — the flat, sepia-colored, mud-lurking carp. 

I say. that ainy thing that the goldfish can do we can do. 
Not quickly, not easily, but then, gentlemen, what comes 
easily in this life other than a stock contract at Republic 
for a pretty horse? 

If the exhibitors will join together and permit their 
genes to be the first used for this new treatment, I am sure! 
that within a few generations we will have customers 
with built-in Cinerama. 

of the Somerset Maughanv story, Rita Hayworth and A!do 
Ray as the celebrated Sadie and sergeant in “Sadie Thomp- 
son,” discuss sex and sex problems with an adult ap- 

Illicit love has been the central theme of literature 

-sinee-Biblieal-t-imesi— -l^c^screen-had-only-dared-to-louclu: 

upon it in a direct and realistic fashion within the past 
few years.. Certainly movie makers knew illicit love 
existed; the propriety of . exhibiting this theme on the 
screen was a question of timing. 

Do the participants in illicit love affairs always ppy for 
their sin? What is the norm of illicit love relationships? 
Dr. Kinsey has written two significant books! on the subject 
which have already received a wide acceptance. Certainly 
the behavior pattern' of men and women, as evinced in 
his statistical survey, is so basic and so deep within human 
personality itself, that even the most avid enemy of It'® 

. movies cannot blame the screen for Dr. Kinsey’s interest- 
ing findings. Dr. Kinsey’s, book, if it says nothing else, 
makes the point that based enrhis^findings Americans are 
indeed a grown-up and adult race of people. The movies, 
over the years, through the intrusio'n of adult themes, 
and adult handling of adult themes, have been saying the 
same thing. 

In the specific regard to illicit relationships the Code 
works no hardship on the producer making his picture 
within the framework of good taste and good sense. The 
Code, in fact, is thfe sum total of accepted moral he- 
havior, arid is entirely realistic in the handling of this 
theme. There is no inexorable rule that this sin neces- 
sarily be followed by punishment, but rather than repeiil* 
ance be the consequence, at least, of this infraction of our 
moral code. : 

We have moved from the silly in sexual matters to 
subtle; we have moved from the supercilious siren to 
Sadie. In short, we have moved from the siren to subtlet>> 
and everyone seems better off tor it— including-tho-indUo 
picture industry. 





mo NOW 



; ★ 







also starring ROBERT MORLEY 










Forty-eighth p^SHEfY Anniversary Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

.,**«*;« S ^1 .;,!.< % ,;.^ 

Wednesday, Jannaiy 6, 1954 

Forty .eighth Anniversary 

act of love 

Anatole Litvak Prod. Starring 
Kirk Douglas and Dany Robin 
Produced by Benagoss Inc. 


Prints by Technicolor 
Starring Tony Curtis 
An Aubrey Schenck Prod. 


in Color, 3-D. Starring Lex Barker 
An Edward Small Production 



in Color 

An Edward Small Production 


in PatheColor 
Starring Dan O'Herlihy 


John Huston's Production, starring 
Humphrey Bogart, Jennifer Jones, 
Gina Lollobrigida 


Based on the best seller 
Produced and Directed by 
Brian Desmond Hurst 


in PatheColor. Starring Errol Flynn 
and Gina Lollobrigida 


Color by Technicolor. Produced 
and Directed by Robert Rossen 


Color by Technicolor, Widescreen 
Starring Burt Lancaster 
A Hecht-Lancaster Production 


Color Corp. of America. Starring 
Anthony Dexter, Eva Gabor. Prod, 
by Aubrey Wisberg— Jack Pollexfen 


Color by Technicolor. Starring 
Robert Morley, Maurice Evans 
A Lopert Films Release 


In Eastman color. Widescreen 
Starring Glenn Ford, 
Arthur Kennedy 


in PatheColor. Starring 
Rod Cameron, Joanne Dru 
An Edward Small Presentation 


in Eastman Color. Produced and 
Directed by Frank O. Graham 


Color by Color Corp. of Amer. 3-D 
Starring Richard Egan, Constance 
Dowling, Herbert Marshall 
Produced by Ivan Tors 


Color by Technicolor. Starring 
Richard Egan, Dawn Addams. 
An Edward Small Prod. 

and his 


in Color. An Edward Small Prod. 


in 3-D. Starring Dennis O'Keefe 
Produced by Steven Pallos 


A Greene-Rouse Production 
Presented by Edward Small 



** " 
* V.« AW. .* 

f ✓ ' y* 

XL, ,s 


• I 

■ \ 


Starring Orson Welles. Produced 
and Directed by Orson Welles 



Color Corp. of Amer., Widescreen 
Starring Jack Mahoney, Peggie 
Castle. An Edward Small Prod. 


Starring Gene Tierney, 

Leo Genn, Glynis Johns 
A J. Arthur Rank Presentation 


in PatheColor, Widescreen 

9 p 

Starring Dawn Addams, Tab Hunter 
An Edward Small Presentation 

-V V f 


Color Corp. of America. Starring 
William Lundigan, Richard Carlson, 
Herbert Marshall. An Ivan Tors Prod. 


Eastman Color, 3-D, Widescreen 
With electrically animated puppets. 
A Nassour Bros. Prod. 



Starring Rod Cameron, Tab Hunter 
An Edward Small Production 


Color by Color Corp. of America 
Starring Dennis Morgan, Boris Karloff 
Produced by W. R. Frank 




Color by Technicolor, Widescreen 
Starring Cornel Wilde, Jean Wallace 
Produced by Raymond Stross 


Color by Technicolor 
Starring Humphrey Bogart, Ava 
Gardner, Edmond O'Brien. Written, 
Dir., Prod, by Jos. L. Mankiewicz 


Starring Alec Guinness and Yvonne 
de Carlo. A Lopert Films Release 


* Prints by Technicolor 
Full-length feature documentary 



Color by Technicolor. Starring 
Van Heflin and Wanda Hendrix 
Produced by Aubrey Baring 
and Maxwell Setton 


By Mickey Spillane. Starring 
Anthony Quinn and Peggie Castle 
Produced by Victor Saville 


Starring Alec Guinness 
A J. Arthur Rank Presentation 


Starring James Mason, Claire Bloom 
Produced and Directed by Carol Reed 
A Lopert Films Release 


Color by Technicolor 
Starring Gregory Peck 
A J. Arthur Rank Presentation 



Color by Technicolor 
Starring Gregory Peck 
A J. Arthur Rank Presentation 



Color by Technicolor 
Starring Martha Hyer 
Produced by Charles Reynolds 

the time of 
the cuckoo 

Color by Technicolor 
A Lopert Films Release 


Color by Technicolor 
Starring Gregory Peck 


Color by Technicolor 
An Edward Small Production 


Color by Technicolor, Widescreen 
Warring Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster 
A Hecht-Lancaster Production 


Color Corp. of America. Starring 
Rory Calhoun and Peggie Castle 
A Schenck-Koch Production 


Starring Beverly Michaels and 
Richard Egan: A Greene-Rouse Prod. 
An Edward Small Presentation 


PatheColor, in CinemaScope 
Starring Errol Flynn 
Produced by J. Barrett Mahon 


Starring Ginger Rogers 
Produced by Maxwell Setton 


Starring Barbara Stanwyck, 
George Sanders and Gary Merrill 
Produced by Chester Erskine 


Humor History of ’53 

"t HY GARDNER - ^ 

The advent of 3-D, Malenkov; an acting Lt, Governor 
visiting a labor leader in jail, the GodfreyrLaRosa hassle, 
the Kinsey Report on Female Behavior, Eisenhower s 
addiction to golf, traffic, politics, Communism, taxes, Mari- 
lyn Monroe, and Rose and Rockefeller 

alimoney jousts and the UN provided 
90% of the themes around which the 
pro and semi-pro wits and quarter- 
wits embroidered topical joke's. Here 
is a reprise Of some of the jolliest. 

Henny Youngman’s comment, when 
asked vvhether he read a copy of the 
Kinsey Report, jet-propelled itself 
around the show-world. ‘‘No,” Henny 
answered, "I’ll wait and see the 

When New York’s acting Lieut.-Gov- 
, ernor Arthur H. Wicks was criticized 

Hy Gardner by Tom Dewey for visiting labor 

leader Joe Fay in Sing Sing prison, somebody said Dewey 
was tidying to burn the Wicks at both ends. ■ 

Senator Wayne Morse talked uninterruptedly for 22 
hours and 26 minutes and, an editor summed it all up by 
commenting “Every Morse to his own Code!” 

When Russia’s UN diplomats began to act a little palsy- 
walsy with Washington, Nat Hariris of La yie. Eh Rose 
figured they probably needed a loan before they could start 
: a war. ■' ■ 

When N. Y. City Magistrate Murtagh began dragging 
in “scofftaws" for failing to answer traffic summonses, tee- 
vee actress Syd Smith said this about one violator:. “She’s 
had her entire -home, redone - in Early Parking Tickets.” 

tii midseason it looked, and rightfully so, that; the N. Y. 
Yankees were going to rim away with the pennant. Th.s 
inspired a “Hate the Yanks” campaign— which inspired 
this crack: “If the rest of the league doesn’t cut it out 
they’ll be renaming it the Un-American League!” .. 

Senator McCarthy got married and everybody wondered 
whether the marriage ceremony also included a loyalty 
oath. ; 

When a Russian in a labor camp committed su icide. 
— JtjhirCam'eron^W-ajze'rerhaiked, lv You can’t ■blame'Tiiin for 
wanting to better his position!” 

The Washington book burning incident created a lucra- 
tive new sideline for singer Karen. Chandler — selling 
matches to State Department librarians. 

Parade publisher Red Motley made a speech titled “Bet- 
ter Selling for Better Living” and got a request for 700 
reprints from the National Cemetery Assn, of Washington, 

Jane Kean’s Crack 

During a 'waiter’s pension walkout Jane Tteah waited 
almost 20 minutes before her waiter would even talk with 
her. “What die. you stalling for,” she snapped, “your pen- 
sion to come due?” 

After a rash of film theatre hold-ups, Oscar Levant 
observed that “the movie business must be improving.” 

Another Americanism was uttered when a radio critic, 
noted that in some of those late, late television movies the 
only familiar names in the casts were those of the spon- 
sors. , 

Milton Berie met the most spoiled animal in the world— 
a rabbit who was an only child! 

General Carlos P. Romiilo described Soviet policy as 
“An iron hand with a boarding house reach!” 

Remember the fellow who wrote a book telling you how 
to cut corners on your taxes? Well, he’s now. working on a 
sequel titled ‘-.My Five Years at Leavenworth!” ' 

Returning G. i.’s who enjoyed. Japanese food- occasion- 
ally.: Were invited to patronize a . West Side restaurant 
which advertised : ‘ Suki Yaki Like Mother Used to Make.” 

After Dick Haymes and Rita Hayworth married there 
Was a rumor around that Rita Was working up a nightclub 
act with her husband. “But what can she do in person?” 
was the question. “In a pinch,” was the shrugged reply, 
“she can always do scenes from her latest divorce!” 

N. Y. Journal-American critic John McClain’s observa- 
tion upon the revival of “Oklahoma,” scarcely a man is 
now alive Who has not become related by marriage to some 
member of some company of -Oklahoma’.” . 

A Boston bookshop placed the novel “Live Alone and. 
Like It” under a sh elf ma rked “Humor.” .... 

1 Ed N oble i n a Rut . 

After ABC chairman Ed Noble dropped a hole-in-one at 
the Wee Burn Country Club a wag noted that Noble 
holds the record for making holes-in-one — that he’s been 
manufacturing Life Savers for years. 

Walter Tenny described an alcoholic as a guy who drinks 
as much as you do— but happens to be somebody you don’t 

Boxing Commissioner Robert K. Chris tenberry g ave 
- —the-real-mearTi i r g of~ tlre~lettcrs~U:S:S7R7i~Union of Silently 
Swallowed Republics. 

A fellow, called up the boxoffice of “End As a Man” 
and. inquired if Christine Jorgensen would positively be 
in the performance that night. 

Many fans complained that Marciano wasn’t very grate- 
ful while knocking put challenger Roland LaStarza. Which 
made one wit spout: “I wonder how many of his critics 
would pay $30 to see Rocky starred in a ballet?” 

After Dior came out with his idea of a high hemline, 
Jean Carroll said she thought it Was silly because a wom- 
an’s most prized asset is a man's imagination. 

Sir Edmund Hillary, who conquered Mt. Everest, asked 
a London real estate agent to please find him a flat— 
preferably oti the ground floor! 

Bob Cummings told about the French politician who 
fell asleep during a debate arid woke up to find he’d been 
named Premier twice, impeached once, reinstated and 
awarded the Legion of Honor. 

1 M islai d the Theatre 

Fred Allen said Tiis aunt in Brooklyn, hearing that 
you don’t have to wear glasses to see a Cinemascope 
movie, left her glasses home— and then couldn’t find the 

Upon hearing that Winthrop Rockefeller was going to 
settle -with Bobo for some $5,500,000, columnist Irv Kup- 
ciriet. claimed that Tommy Manville wired Winnie; “What 
•re you trying to do—start a price war?” 

With both Deborah Kerr and John Kerr featured in 
“Tea and Sympathy,” it was suggested that the hit be 
retitled “Calling A1I Kerrs.” 

During the Godfrey-LaRosa humility conflagration a 



bank teller was held up who displayed real humility. When 
the yegg stuck • gun lit his face the teller asked “Will 
tens and twenties be all right, sir?” 

When the UN complained it had a parking problem 
some back-seat driver observed, “No wonder. They keep 
going 'round in ’circles!” 

A sign in a voting booth behind the Iron Curtain; “Vote 
Communist— the life you save may be your own!” 
Unretouched photos of Georgi Malenkov revealed he 
Avas Russia’s outstanding capitalist— had the biggest cor- 

And somebody, after Charles E. Wilson was forced to 
’ sell his General Motors stock upon becoming Secretary of 
Defense, wondered if he’d halve to sell his Defense Bonds 
if he resigned to return to General Motors. ; _ . . 

When President Eisenhower started to practice drives on 
the White House lawn it was. suggested that the “Keep Off 
the Grass” notices be removed arid replaced with signs 
reading “Please Replace Divots.” 

Hayden Wallace eariie up. with the brightest idea yet to 
put an end to quiz shows; give contestants both the ques- 
tions and answers and let. them guess who sent them in! 

' • « • 


. , , ; . Paris. 

My friend Herb Kretzmer is real gone, in fact he’s just 
gone south, South Africa that is. He Was lip visiting me 
for awhile on a travel junket prepared for him by one 
of the local wing stations here South Africa is now open 
game for tourists and the veldt will soon hum with north- , 
enters looking for those lions in the street. However, Herb, 

, who is the lieppest show biz journalist down there, ar.d 
runs the spec page for the Sunday Express and other pubs 
under a barrage of bylines, says the last lion was mortally 
wounded when a certain HK said that big screens are just 
magnifying the incompetence of certairi films. Aside from 
making and breaking pix my friend Herb is also a great 
.unpublished short story writer and to prove it I submit 
a few Samples. from his yet unwritten, unpublished manu- 
script, “Real Gone Stories.” Told to me du ring riiugg s e s - 
— stons^t‘tiiF''Noti veil e E ve Lido" ari"d"pix and legit seances, 
these outlines may have a few loopholes, but I’m sure 
you’ll be convinced, as I.ani, that some of them are cool, 
others crazy, still others gone, but they’ll all stone you: 

Ladislas Lipsteift had an obsession. Not only was he a 
great composer, crazy arranger and cool genius, but he 
loved dogs. Putting Towser and Towskonini together, he 
decided to write a great concerto one day that could only 
be heard by dogs. The great wo: k began. He managed 
to convince 100 unionized musicians that the sounds they 
were not making were great ultra-frequency music. They 
.worked and worked and Ladislas worked and worked, and 
though hydrophobia and runaway dogs increased he 
pushed his composition to the end; Then one day it was 

In an empty studio the orchestra played and played and ’ 
there wasn't a sound, but everybody knew it was great. But 
suddenly an old janitor, Who had been cleaning up, stopped 
working and sat down to listen. He was moved and trans- 
ported, and after it was over rushed up and congratulated 
Ladislas. Ladislas was aghast and wanted to know if he 
was being kidded. The janitor assured him it was fine and 
hummed snatches from the piece. Soon everybody was 
aghast. They all crowded around the janitor and wanted 
to know how he heard sounds that no mortal could hear. 
That was easily understood as the janitor took oft his 
clothes and. frisked around the podium before trilling them 
he was a dog. . - 

The French love folk singers, especially if they Rave 
a guitar accompanying them. So when a leading impre- 
sario got a visit from a finger who was a folk singer he Was 
attentive. The finger didn’t say a word but immediately 
played up and down the strings and gave out with a fine 
medley of early Irish, Celtic and American folksongs that 
soon had the impresario gurgling. The finger was booked 
into one of the leading night clubs in Paris where even 
the waiters have gold Louis buried in their gardens. The 
big moment came. ' 

After the blackout a heam of light plashed on a guitar 
which began to play and sing folk songs-in-a-rieh-baritone. 
•The practical French were enraged and smelled a hoax. 
They demanded their gold Louis back. The manager 
quelled them and had the folk finger come out from inside 
the guitar where a caprice had put him. A series of shrugs 
Spread over the room denoting that was different, and they 
all sat down to listen to the folk finger sing. 

A dance team Who had been doing the same act for 30 
years , and lived in the same small flat for 30 years and 
came home to it every night for 30 years, one night 
got bored with each other. The man sulked over his 
Variety and the woman just moped over her mop. After 
hours o f thi s the man remarked that he couldn’t stand -this 
cramped apartment any more. He said that one couldn’t 
even swing a cat in there. 

So he grabbed his cat and swung it. To this day the 
blood stains, furry . spots oil the walls and the messy floors 
prove he was right. 

The Inelastic India Rubber Band . ‘ 

A rubber band grew up thinking it was an. India rubber 
man due to un unfortunate tendency of its mother to lisp. 
Therefore he neglected to get vulcanized, for India rubber 
. men never get vulcanized and when he felt he was ready 
the lure of show biz led him to a carnival. lie presented 
himself to the boss and told him that he was an India 
Rubber Man and wanted a job in the side show. The Boss 
told him that he was mad and that he was only a rubber 
band, The rubber band was furious, and insisted he was 
a rubber man. The boss told him to prove it. 

The rubber band cried, beat his chest, ranted and 
panted, acted arch and coy (a well known comedy team at 
the time), broke into a softshoe routine, was cynical and 
shy, recited poetry, spat on the floor and in general 
cavorted like a man. The boss was convinced. and decided 
to hire the rubber band as a rubber man, but when the 
rubber band stretched but . his hand to sign the contract 
he broke into little brittle pieces. He was gone. . . . 

■ ■ tji # 

As 1 said, these were just fragments of the K papers, 
and the smoke and general rumpus (a well knowfysoldier 
at the time) might have gotten in the way. of my heating 
everything. It is even possible that a couple of these out- 
lines may be mine. But it was his fault, he started it, and 
if lie conies up here with a lion to chastise me for lying, 
why, I'll probably be gone anyway. 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Further Adventures Of Myself 

(Or a Sure Cure for Waatefulnert) 



As constant readers of this annual seminar may reed] 

I once labored in the rice paddies of radio, shifted to the 
cornfields of television and eventually landed in the fun 
factories of *Filmville. I don’t expect this to last, either. I 

have never been able to keep a jo 
very long. Take the Army. I got into 

that select (ed) group in 1941 but the 
war ended and I was jettisoned. 

But no matter how long this lasts 
X am grateful for one thing that has 
happened during my career as a 
screenwriter, I have learned how to 
get up iri the morning. The rigors of 
studio life are demanding. The front 
Office demands that you show up. 
Preferably before noon. A shoddy at- 
titude, granted, but it exists. 

Hal Ranter Now, in all my years as a radio 

author,.! was seldom up before noon, 
much less any place. Nowadays, though, I’m out of bed 
by sevenish each morning and I’d like to tell you how to 
do it. 

When first faced with the problem of rising early I had 
a choice of methods: an alarm clock or a rooster. Because 
they don’t seem to be riiaking roosters the way they did 
when I was a farm boy, I chose the clock over the cock. 
But the first week proved that Wouldn’t do. At a quarter 
of seven, the bell Would put the silence of my room to 
rout with such sudden ferocity my-heart was running 
around nervously seeking an exit . even before my eyes 
could open. Common sense; and frequent reports of coro- 
nary cases among .my contemporaries called for less severe 
methods of waking. 

So We tried the rooster. I shopped^at the San Fernando 
Valley Fair for a large, vocal Plymouth Rock. His first day 
on the job the only one lie Woke- was a. neighbor’s Dober- 
man. The Doberman ate the rooster. We slept on and 
the children arrived at school the next few days just in 

time for recess. ‘ ' ■ , ’ .. . . ' ■ ._ 

* r It waTaboiit this time rdiseovered the clock-radio. All . 
you have to do, the ads said, was set it and forget it. Comes 
morning, you’ll be awakened With music, soothing and de- 
lightful, they promised. How lovely! But clock-radios 
are expensive and by the time a fellow gets his Jaguar 
paid off, it’s his wife’s birthday arid he has to have her 
. shoes half-soled. Then the water bill’s due or you hear 
where you can pick up a couple of cases of bourbon on 
sale and what with one thing and another you never seem 
to have enough money for the clock-radio. 

' Need an M.I.T. Degree 

One day last summer,, the company picnic featured a 
raffle and when I least expected good fortune, I won a 
clock-radio. It took only a Week to figure out how to work 
it: you set the- small dial to the hour you want. Or is it 
the big dial? Anyway, you switch off the automatic switch- 
on . . , or switch on the automatic s\yitch-off ... . . !if I 
had it here, I should show you) . . . then select your sta- 
tion, cut off the alarm and plug in the socket. . 

But you have to know what .station to select. 

That first morning, I was startled Up by a group of 
cowboy musicians, all with sinus trouble, banging madly 
on their catarrhs and wailing hysterically about the plight 
of a mountain woman who got a letter edged in black. 

So pitiful was the tale of woe, a tear coursed down by 
cheek. I turned my head, buried it in the pillow and 
sobbed myself back to sleep. 

No fool, I consulted the radio log of the evening news- 
paper before selecting: the station for the next morning. 
Did I say no fool? Fool! 

I was awakened by a delighted madman who laughingly 
told the world it was “now 12 minutes to seven— and here’s 
an oldie but a goodie by ole Woody!” • 

“Look,” . my sensible wife said to me that evening, “why 
don’t you set the radio for a news program?” She pointed 
out that one of my favorite newscaisters, a dulcet-toned gen- 
tleman who has an apologetic delivery, comes on at 0:45 
every weekday. So I dialed in his station and retired. 

And it workedv— He-came ofrquietly, almost whisperi ng 
the news. He’d talk for possibly five minutes before I 
became aware of his presence. Gradually, I would wake 
up. His voice would begin to beguile me. I would reach 
over and turn up the volume so that I could hear what he 
was saying. 

• Such a Miserable World ! 

Then, every morning without fail, it would happen. I 
Would begin to actually hear the news. Tornado Wipes 
out city in midwest. Seven car pile-up on Hollywood free- 
way. Explosion destroys veteran’s home. Spies discovered 
working in Army mess kit manufacturing centre. Hitch- 
hiker slays pretty baby sitter. Baby sitter slays pretty 
hitchhiker. Baby slays pretty sitter. Prison riot, Political 
scandal, Robbery. Arson. Rape. And then the stock 
market. ; Everything has gone up. Except your stocks. 

“Getting up?” my wife would aski . 

“Up! Who the heck wants to get up and go out into a 
world like that.'” 

Then my conscience would begin to work on me. Okay* 
so it’s a terrible world. Lots of things wrong. You realize 
it. You recognize them. Are you a man? Of course you 
are! Then get up. Get out of bed. Get out into that 
World, mister— and .save it! 

Snap on the light. Yawn. Stretch. Work my lips over 
my teeth. Stick out my tongue. Turn on the water., Scoop 
up a handful, splash it on my face. Then horror would 
strike. I'd look* in the mirror. 

Bags under the eyes. Bristles of Whiskers. Hair like an 
abandoned haystack. 

“Ha!” I’d snort at my reflection. “Look who’s going 
to save the world!” 


Back to bed! 

And the children were late for school. 

Now I come to my discovery. I threw out the dock- 
radio and rely these days on the one thing all. of us can 
trust: our minds. My method is simple and infallible. 

Before going to bed each night, 1 say to myself, “Hal, 
get up at seven o’clock. Get up at seven o’clock. Get up 
at seven.” I keep repeating this* drumming it into my 
■ mind. 

And it Works. Only once has it failed to get me out of 
bed by seven. That was last month. For some reason, 
during the. night, 1 fell asleep. 

Hair like an 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty -eighth 



The Woman In the Typewriter 

Bv CLAUDE BINYON on^ the edge of the Mojave desert,” 

^ said Deckett. I used to fly it every 

Hollywood. of Page 1.00, which was glued to night when nobody could see me." 
t n«,.r lived in a cabin in 101. ‘‘Where is it now?*' 

. TIUS «. f iritains beyond my ranch. Reading can excite you at one ‘Gone. The Knights of Columbus 
to* !!r n {ought Tn the Spanish- extreme and piit you to_sleep at stole it ; If you want, you can use 

H e ; .-!n ^u/ar but he would not the other, but this left me right in ^t in the movie— about how they. 

Ament an ya , ^ age< the middle with a headache. tbe invention from me.” 

Th e most Dazedly I crawled into bed. . Tm afraid this isn’t a story for 

striking thing The next morning Deckett wa« Pictures/’ I said as gently as pos- , 
about him was waiting for me outside the hoUse. That World War between! 

that he al- “1 j ust wanted to tell you the cabi- i be Knights of Columbus and the 

ways wore net is coming along fine,” he said. Masons . . .” 

new Levis, to And ; before I_ could thank him he “Try io tell me that’s far-".. 

‘ the extent that asked me if I had read his manu- fetched!” snapped Deckett. ‘‘It’s 

-they never scnpt. I countered by asking him going on right now. under your 

h a d b e e n why. he had wanted me to read it. nose, and you don’t know it, One 
'washed. When I flow About It? I of these days it’s going to pop out j 

his old new ~ ' — in the open, and all hell’s going: to • 

Levis would 1 figured you might want to break loose. We’ll be lucky if a ! 
wear out he ma ke a movie out of it,” he said, hundred, people are left alive on > 

Claude Binyon WO uid replace “How many pages did you read?” earth.” I 

■ . f -JK -and for a “From page 2 to page 101,” I 7 — ..—- I: 
thcnv with new- Lev , . ans w e red. ‘‘Between the glue;” | Just a Lu cky Guess j 

few days the 4ow His ~ • Deckett was satisfied. “You’re Deckett obviously was a nvan 

would )Q0 ^r e S pp u ptt ' telling the truth,” he conceded, who believed in what he said. I 

name was B«D Dec_ . - “You’re just getting to thefgpod decided not -to argue with him. 

Deckett - was ah hi ' etmaker- part, but can’t you sec already you’ “fell, me,” I said finally, “were 
pector; author, and^c^ n . . ^ could make a movie out of it?” you ever a truckdriver?” j 

, but mostly he Aid noth) mg. 1 mieu -j don't knew,” I hedged. “That “A long time ago,” said Deckett. J 
him to make a capm t._ dirigible that runs on two 12-volt “Were you ever married?” j 

iioned, mostly he. aia n b. .batteries-^it’s - pretty • -far-fetched.” “Never” said Deckett decisively, ■ 


$ age . tbe, middle with a headache, stole- the invention from me.” Moppets, once top money mak- stores. 

most Dazedly I crawled into bed. “I’m afraid this isn’t a story for ers, top fan mail magnets and tops Jane Withers, with seven years 

[ thing The next morning Deckett was ^ g ,?, ntly , as P°3- Vin boxoflice polls, aren’t hitting Ihe of stardom, 29 financially success^ 

-w Sirf* ‘coiumiX jackpot > daj • “ 1 p w and Scv 1 e ‘ al annUi » 1 ?a,i " 8 ? 

wore net is coming along fine,” he said. Masons • . ■■■ v . w c MU 1 am0ng t,ie top bo - names, grossed 

And A Little Child Shall Lead Them 
To The B.0.--Where Are They Now? 


.. . Hollywood— j a million do 

Moppets, once top money mak- stores. 

in_tlie_5- and 10c 

Claude isfnybri 

and'lvhat’s W ! a sma11 forlunc: and salaries of $?.- 
Come of the 000*$2,500 per week were doled out 
• heydey . mop- [ to several of the other babes in 
pels? Is a new" moVieland during plush years of 
crop of kid ; ’37-’40. 

overdue? P * rS j Another De cade , Another Crop"! 

Recent sto- During the next decade, a new 
rics in Vari- roster of child talent drew fan mail 
... ety, “C h i 1 d , and money. These included Eliza- 
Star D o d g e beth Taylor, Margaret O’Brien, 
Kav Camnbeii G o e s O n”; i Claude Jarman Jr., Peggy Ann Gar- 
“C r i m i n a l i ner, Joan Evans, Natalie Wood, 
Contempt Hits Head of Guild For ( Sharon MofTelt, and Gigi Perreap. 
Screen-Dazzled Kids,” referred to But during recent years, though 
the rackets exploiting fond parents i plenty of talented youngsters have 
who are still bustin’ out all over. 1 made their appearances, some of 
Another news story dealt with the . them over and over again, none 

•..-i'* • • . “ «irf ; for : .ml , T V b ’j x TT - ' ■ oecn ■ layior, iwargarei tnien. »iui ian icuers ior me soaa sei. 

give me a. p s > asked what far-fetched, I said, truckdriver. •• ..... , Jane Powell and Skippy Homcier What’s happened 9 That’s the $64 

reading his novel. .1 asicea wnai “Why do you say that? asked Deckett looked at me m surprise. U , PI ; P amnno thr. ,w P n.! k.. 

novel, and he went to his ancient Deckett. “I made a working model “When did I tell you about, that?” MacDonald- * question _\vhich 1 is puzzling prod uc- 

•' [pickup truck and caime back with' of it that could lift a man as high “Do you remember his name?” ‘ J * : er ^’ cas l ,rl § directors— and inopr 

a manuscript that looked like it a §. be wanted to go, and it ran on. “Remember?” siiid Deckett . “To For downright, dependable, two-. pe - • 

had been excavated from a pile, two flashlight batteries.” rhy, dying day I’ll never forget lhat'j fisted, boxoffice appeal, kids used to Sherry Jackson is a veteran of 

nf his old, old Levis. It was the 1 stared at him. “You actually blackhearted Kelly!” | rate top billing, Although studio , some 30 pix; Tommy Rettig is no 

^ first nianuscnpT~‘r“Kad'“^VbT— en^ , . - : w •“ : ' rar'ln'lb'e^oviceHlr•frb^btrf^iTe•-came^^s-de=- 

countered. that actually smelled 4 » ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ > ♦♦♦♦♦♦ ♦♦♦♦ ♦ ♦♦»♦♦♦ 44++++* ! bone and. production generally has spite his years, and George Wins- 

piiysically A r'fl • I- .♦ • been curtailed, the dearth of Midas- lo' v » pint-sized basso, has stolen 

/rU! :: A I rip With Lantor l from 

« . By BENNY Rl BIN I - -.“1* 

lis'hci- and the pages came back 'thei/love W affecUun 11 on , ponant ru'e$ ha 

puWiflic^he^fued pages *100 "a^d Eddie Cantor and I were on the smoker, .you wouldn't under- “thm i J?? 0 " 1 i‘ ‘a w6nd " lai ’ d ’‘ , > 

?0I ^together and again .'the manu- Chief en route to New York, to stand 1^ hapov goWcn moment w°hen « Jane , s t un < ler |: Beverl y Sue 

- script came hack with .its glue in- play the Palace Theatre. , { Cantor: I guess I m a pretty, tag. m PP j p „ 0(her .. ^^s^e Jven 

tact. Finally he made the supreme Eddie scheduled our days on [the i. T _ do Pe. r • gan under some rock just as a pros- ^ ^ 


script came back with its glue in- piay .me ra^ — P do oe F ' might find “another” Jackie Coo- •; Sns and Peter MUes have ki vCn 

tact. Finally he made the supreme Eddie scheduled our days on the. j . d °P^ F . . gan under some rock just as a pros- good berforman^ 

test by gluing the cover to page train— to. breakfast early, talk lay- Me -* W e® , n . t ^ s na nnfM voir fih- ** clor dreams of discovering an- i| 0 J rs Slti^ pb tbSr hin^m ' 
oiie. That’s the way it. came back out of our show, three games of „l!.conV other Comstock Lode. ft Pad rVuriti>?a h d 

from the publisher, so Deckett de- casino Uwo out of three . for a ^ gers and rehearsing a song # . . •• ; . ^ead of vritmg fan maiL 

: stead of writing fan maiL 

:: K.r TnVin clppn im sui <• .me F«auc yi. jui wun Aauonai veivei, rreaaie 

leadm^ The Final War, by -John- .si P . . you. Put on the light. (I did. child talent was one of Holly- Bartholomew with “David Copper- 

Deckett. 1 had to > start on Page This was fine for Cantor, but ner- an d he laughed some more », [ wood’s minor miracles. The line- field. ’’.and Margaret O’Brien with 

2 because of the glue, and w'hen I vous ■ -me, had no salves and 8 Let me explain. You see, Ida up included Shirley Temple. Jane “Journey for Margaret,” are gone 

finished Page 100 and found^ it o clock to bed meant I had pneu- used to snore, so when we j Withers, Deanna Durbin. Freddie but not forgotten, 

still glued to Page 101 I put the monia and bpth legs_ .broken. -How- went to bed I d snap my fin- Bartholomew, Judy Garland, the the hundreds of movip mnrw 

thing down and decided to rest ever, you know Eddie. We did it ger s to keep her awake ’til I Mauch twins, Jackie Cooper, Bo, ' pe ^ „ rh e ' h €n n t eJed^ ^ the 

niy head for the remainder of the. all to the letter and finally when feU asleep . riita Granville; Baby LeRoy. Vir- division of the HbllvwS 

ni §bt. ; , • ■ ; both .plates were in the.glasses,,gnd Me; 0h no! ginia Weldler. Sybil Jason. Bobby In bnh a Imalf 

Cleancut Truckdriver I hrm- in ^the dower,, with me -on the cantor: Forgive me for .blowing Breen apd ' . Spaiiky • . MacFarl-apd. • • reached 'the* homp^tretn^MJnv' 

— - — r—— — — - — - , o ,^7 couch, the lights went out. my top. You have another Their combined incomes, derived of theni ran at th' e s tart and 

»h°yt a clean- instead of benefiting from Can- cigaret - arid : we'll . play one not only from the silver screen ^ but half -wav marks but when! child- 

cut truckdriver. who was in love tor’s talk, by trying to gather game of casino; loser to pay from fadio v recordings, endorse- charms and duddv Dlavful 

with a _ beautiful - waitress who health fronv sleep. all I could think f or a sturgeon sandwich at ments and personal appearances, ness disappeared withal ‘’-vear old 

worked in a roadside diner. She of was that redhead in the club Car. Lindy’s. j totaled about $2,000,000. And prior ^flitvT^kThe siuff hat make! 

was a gay one, given to consider, r can * t get dressed in the dark andr _1_ ^ | to World War II. inflation and SeSion^ 

ers C but in our ^m^ffsured^that 1 st ir I’ll wake him. My eyes Mel Bailerino Returns | higher taxation, this was nice crisp hit pay dirt ' R 

- .on.. ' nni * hurt from trying to shut, out the Metro casting', director Mel ’Bal- • sreen -hay. . ! c htr i P v 'arsd n» nn9 

mtor: rorgive me tor voiowing nreen apa ppant^y iiiacranana, reached the home stretch. Manv 
- my - top. You have another Their combined incomes, derived of them ran u - ell at th ' e star t and 
. cigaret- and well play one not only from the silver screen but- half-wav marks, but when! child- 
game of casino; loser to pay ; from radio v recordings, endorse- hood charms and puppv plavful- 
for a sturgeon sandwich at ments and personal appearances, ■ ness disappeared w?th i^-vpar-oid 
Lindy-s. j to.aled^bou 4? 2,0h0.0p_0,A !S prior 

■ — : — ' . . — — “ mflation and professionals to c ross th et ap e and 

Mel Bailerino Returns | higher taxation, this was nice crisp hit pav dirt H 

Metro casting director Mel Bal- sreeh hay 

Shirley and Deanna and others 

ly combed his hair before enter- ^ ake him too. This is murder! ing 0 f several pictures in work by nually, including SoO.OOO from ; vear-old daughter. Freddie is a 

ing, he discovered she was gone. This would . . . Wait a minute; the company in Egypt, Italy and = Quaker Oats for telling the young- i TV director Bobbv Breen is stag- 

The owner simply shrugged when what’s that noise? ... He s napping England. sters of America that she ate puffed ing a “comeback," Johnnv Downs, 

questioned “They come and go” his fingers, Ah. ha. he must be re- William F. Rodgers, Loew’s vee- wheat and another $75,000 from former “Our Gang.” has returned 
lie said “They’re all alike If you hearsing to himself. See if I can pee and sales consultant, left for a the sale of dolls. And don’t for- to Hollvwood following success in 

ask me, she climbed into the cab ^atcli the song from the tempo^of Miami vacation over the weekend. ' get that she’s the bab.v who found a Broadway musical; Jackie Cooper 

with some youPg truckdriver- and his snapping . . . Susie ?... No, , was a recent Broadway hit. Dickie 

took off foT nowhere ” too slow. A ’ p o t g t ° e s Ar«r Cheaper, • " J U5 “ “““ 

• Pl . , , , , . , Tomatoes Are ’ . . . No, they liadn t , ' 

yet- I'v* got it! [_ ' 

riri 0 ,i * f , , gie ! Good, now r I can smoke. 1 

* Z d « l ?^ f ?5 gc L ab0U i'. tl,e gir ?’. but lighted a cigaret and he jumped 

<Lu, U dn ' Then h i s su i p , lci r S up like a shot. And so help me, 
slowly became aroused, and he be- d i a i off 

m.^ijgating— and Re ran into c an ( or: Thanks for waking me up. 
ine biggest secret m the world. . • .■ , , 4 ^ 

lie discovered that the Knights of Ale; I thought 5 r pu weie 
Columbus had begun an unde- Cantor: My .doctor told me to ah 
dared World War against the w-nkp ud 

■ Masons! 

Anchored In Space 

ways be sure and wake up 
with a startle, this is good for 
my nerves. 

Me: But you were — . 

'V "v*. ^ 

■. \ V-J 

\“ S,' /\' ^ ' 

fiom a drunken Knights of Colum- Mo. .Now. wait a minute, Edd e, 
fus truckdriver, and when the big you were rehearsing, weren t 
brass discovered' this they kid- you?- 

tripped her and. were holding her Cantor: (still softly) I always re- 
prisoncr on a dirigible that was . hearse under the covers with 
anchored high in space. The the lights out after taking a 
Knights of Columbus had a huge sleeping pill. 

prisoner on a dirigible that was . hearse under the covers with 
anchored high in space. The the lights out after taking a 
Knights of Columbus had a huge sleeping pill. 

| m of these dirigibles anchored Me: Look, Eddie— 

°! e '!'°iJ d, -„?? d Cantor: (Koice rising slightly), 
loused 250 aimed Knights. Rnnl this is a very selfish 

Wa m ine l0r T ? ,e D T.. Silng’ yeu'Vi V " 

i liese dirigibles W ere buoyed by . Tp . Fdd t p __ 

? a,;is that was lighter than noth- Me * Edd i ® . . . . prtnci j 

and each was powered by two Cantor: Beside not having consid- 
i-’VoiL batteries. Thnt‘c wimt it eration for me; are you_ sueh 

J-.-yolt batteries. That’s what it 

ii^' lcr \ our bero learned ail this 
i., L . u . u . ,<Jo bo ^ to remain free, so 
. e was captured and whisked away 

l 1 ! f ho -If i. m . . _ . ■ 

a dope fiend (now he’s yelling) 
that you’ve got to have a cig- 
aret in the (screaming) middle 
of the night? 

was a recent Broadway hit. Dickie 
Moore, who made his first screen 
appearance clad in three-cornered 
pants and a winning smile as the 

infant Barrymore in “Beloved 
Rogue," recently completed his 
25th year in films. And Peggy 
Ryan, who debuted at four, is still 
going strong. 

Judy Garland and Liz Taylor get 
top billing in any epic, while Ben 
Alexander's work in “Dragnet” is 
not to be overlooked. June Lock- 
hart is doing okay, too. And Sybil 
Jason has returned from her native 
Australia to Broadw:ay. Wesley 
Barry, George Brakest one and Rod- 
dy McDowell have turned to the 
production end of pix. 

n the dirigible prison of- -his ‘Me: (dramatic pause) Eddie ; Lis- 
'■ J i rcs s love. And that was the end ' fen; Not being a cigaret i 

Not being 


On ‘Ten Commandments’ 


Arnold Fribcrg. a painted of Bib- 
lical subjects, has been signed by 
Cecil B. DeMille for a series of 
realistic pictures based oh the 
Scriptures. These will be used as 
foundation for the production de-. 
sign of “The Ten Commandments.” 

paintings will depict 12 impor- 
tknt events including the Exodus 
and the Deliverance of the Ten 



Forty&ighth ' ' 


Wednesday, January <>, I9S4 v 

And All Thi»' Ex-Philly FUclf Want^d Wa* to Anchor 

In Sunny California 


more than a dozen other fariioius 
foreign cities. I’ve lunched with 
Lana Turner in London and the 
same, day dined with Mel Ferrer 
in Ireland. I've lived in a log cabin 
alongside those occupied by Jimmy 
Stewart and Janet Leigh in the 
mountains of Colorado and have 
introduced Eleanor Parker to crack 
Air Force pilots at an Arizona base 
where she was making a film. I’ve 
escorted Ava Gardner to a party 
at Noel Coward’s house near Picca* 
dilly; Sat with Gable, Taylor and 
Johnson through plays in. Sari 
Francisco, New York and Paris, 
and have done the same with Pier 
Arigeli and both Elizabeth Taylor 
and Ava Gardner in London. 

I’ve accompanied Deborah Kerr 
to a private audience with Pope 
Pius at the Vatican arid been pres? 
ent when both Robert and Eliza- 
beth Taylor were presented to the 
King and Queen of England. 

| More Roamin’ | 

It has been exciting to watch 
Sam Zimbalist and Mervyn LeRoy 
feed the Christians to the lions for 
scenes in “Quo Vadis,” and more 
than interesting to hear Pandro 
Berman and Richard Thorpe map 
out a battle of literally hundreds 
of _ ar nioTed-vvarrior s ~f or • “Knights 
of the Round Table. 7 I’ve listened 
while John Ford patiently ex- 
plained to the black skinned Afri- 
can natives how he wanted them 
to hurl spears at Gable and Gard 
ner in “Mogambo” and heard him 
read “ Twas the Night Before 
Christmas” to natives and whites 
at a Yuletide party deep in the 
jungle, more than 300 miles from 
the nearest village. I've looked on 
ortce | as Gene Kelly . auditioned the top 
-dreamed- about) but. I’m. practically dancers of -London and Paris and 
a stranger to my neighbors. then, after making his selection, 

Just let an M-G-M producer start put them through a graceful ballet 
planning a film that calls for a long I for “Invitation to the Dance,” 
location and automatically I start i M-G-M’s all dancing film. I’ve gone 
packing my bags. It's 1(1-1 I’ll be . shopping with Gene Tierney in 
on whatever plane or train is tak- London and done the same with 
ing the cast and crew to wherever 
it is that some big shot has decided 
this movie must be made “in the 
interest of authenticity.” 

California and Hudgins, it would 
seem, are destined to be married 
in dreams only. At least until w r e 
both reach a much older age. 

DUririg eight years of association 
with the studio “where there are 
more stars than there are in 
heaven,” I’ve visited virtually every 

Cairo, Egypt 

It all started because of the 
Philadelphia climate. Why, some 
wise part of my subconscious kept 
repeating, suffer through four 
months of . show, furnaces that 
won't work, and overcoats, plus 
four months, of airconditioning, 
mosquito bite lotion and just plain 
sweat in order to | enjoy four 
moriths of decent weather, of 
which, as ,1 recall, only October 
thd May might be called ideal; 

And so I gave up my job on the 
news staff of the Philadelphia Eve- 
ning Bulletin (and let it be stated 
now there isn’t a finer paper in 
the whole of the USA) and headed 
for Hollywood. 

The position offered me by 
Howard Strickling in M-G-M’s pub- 
licity department sounded enticing 
enough. More fun (if you like mo- 
tion pictures, which, I’m f rank to 
admit, I do). Arid more pay. 

But it was California that really 
sold me. The chance to bask in that 
Pacific sunshine .12. out of 12 
months' (okay — so maybe it does 
rain in January occasionally) was 
more than any self respecting Phil- 
adelphian could resist. Or so it 
seemed to me. 

7- •^Following "Cfreeley^ -popular-ad-- 
vice, I headed wekt in 1946. Cali- 
fornia, I might have sung after my 
cross-country automobile trek, here 
I am: And there, I felt like shout- 
ing. is where I want to stay. 

So what happens? 

. Tat y ; made me a Unit Publicity 
Pepreseniative ana started me 
travelling. Sure, I touch home, base 
occasionally. I have my house in 
California (it practically looks out 
over the blue Pacific I 

state in the Union and at least 14 
foreign countries. I’ve travelled _an 
estimated 1 .000,000 miles (arid it’s 
a conservative guess at that). I’ve 
ridden across the U.S. by train, 
plane and automobile. I’ve crossed 
the Atlantic Ocean. 16 times, not 
once by ship. 

Yes, and my job has taken me 
back to Philadelphia (never, alas; 
in October or May) almost as many 
times as I’ve roosted in California. 

I’ve gone boating on beautiful 
Lake Michigan with Esther Wil- 
liams, Jimmy Durante and Lauritz 
Melchior while making a film on 
fashionable Mackinac Island. I’ve 
shared a suite at the surivptuous 
Del Coronado Hotel near San 
Diego with Van Johnson and 
shared a one-room mountain shack 
high in nUe^Sierra^ witlrtlre^safne 
Mr. Johnson. 

| Hudgins’ Travels I 

I’ve ridden on horseback with 
Frank Sinatra along mountain 
trails in the California lode coun- 
try. I’ve taken Elizabeth Taylor 
dancing in London’s Mayfair clubs 
and photographed her feeding the 
pigeons in Trafalgar Square. I’ve 
spent Christmas dining at Maxim’s 
in Paris with Robert Taylor, 
floated in a gondola along Venice’s 
Grand Canal with Taylor and Bar- 
bara Stanwyck, and strolled the 
streets of Dublin, Rome and Cairo 
with the much Travelled Mr. Tay- 
lor; lived for a week with Esther 
Williams amid 1.000 Navy WAVES; 
slept next to Clark Gable's tent 
while on a four months safari 
through darkest Africa. 

I’ve also chased, autograph seek- 
ers from Mr.. Gable while lie was 
being photographed in front of 
Buckingham Palace and have done 
the same while making pictures of 
him at Versailles Palace and on 
the Eiffel Tower. I’ve gone with 
Van Johnson to a reunion of his 
high school class in Newport, R.I., 
and assisted Ava Gardner through 
interviews with the press in Athens . 
(Greece), Zurich (Switzerland), and 

■ Grace Kelly in Nairobi. Ditto with 
: Bob Taylor, in Paris, Esther Wil 

liams in Chicago, and Gable in a 
; village of 200 on the shores of Lake 
: Victoria. 

[ All of this travelling and these 
• tasks (if they can . be called that) 
\ have been in connection with mo- 

■ tion pictures in production. They 
(have been, it is obvious, interesting 
; and indeed, exciting. But probably 
: none of them can equal in thrills 
I the assignment upon which I am 

presently engaged. M-G-M has sent 
me to Cairo with Robert Taylor 
(whose visits to California . have 
been almost as infrequent of late 
as my own), Eleanor Parker, Kurt 
Kasznar, Carlos Thompson and 
Director Robert Pirosh. We are 
filming, in wide screen and color, 
"Valley of the Kings” (I’ll be par- 
doned if, in best press agent fash- 
ion, I describe it. as an. exciting 
adventure romance). 

During most of the filming we 
are living at thte Mena House Hotel, 
in the outskirts of the Egyptian 
capital, where Roosevelt, Churchill 
and Chiang Kai-shek met for their 
historic conference in 1944. And 
like those great historical figures, 
I T a w a k e-each morning to- find the 
Sphinx and the Cheops Pyramid 
practically in my bedroom. They 
are less than 100 yards from the 
hotel. After a few days here we 
move on to the Suez Canal, the 
tombs at Luxor, the ruins at Sa- 
karra arid the famous St. Cath- 
erine’s Monastery at the base of 
Mr. Sinai. 

In short* I’m seeing the world — 
at M-G-M’s expense — when all I 
wanted to see was California. 

No complaints, you understand. 
A guy should know when he's in 


Henry Ginsberg returned to the 
Coast over the ..weekend following 
confabs with Warner Bros, home- 
office executives relating to the 
release plans for George Stevens’ 
production of Edna Ferber’s novel. 

On the Coast, Ginsberg will 
work on production plans with 
Stevens, who is scheduled to be in 
New York late in January. Picture 
will be directed by Stevens arid 
produced in association with Gins- 


Sam Katzman 

Continued from page 12 ; 

newspaper to complain, they verj) 
nicely promised that the next .time 
the producer releases an epic their 
reviews will read, “Produced by 
Sani Kui’tzmart.” 

This mistaken identity bit does 
have its compensations, however, 
as when it comes to restaurants. A 
few weeks ago when my wife and I 
celebrated our wedding anniver- 
sary and I phoned Dave Chasen’s 
for reservations I was a little sur- 
prised “at — ttre*~ giiTs immediately 
happy tone when I told her my 
name. Upon our arrival the waiter 
was extreriiely cordial as he mum- 
bled something about the other 
Tour would most likely arrive later 
and seated us at a large private 
booth. My wife was . quite im- 
pressed, On our way. out we jsaw 
a party of six squeezed around a 
table for two near the swinging 
door to the kitchen* and I felt a 
little sorry for the producer who 
has a name like a dentist. - 

I don’t always come out on top, 
however. When I phone an agent 
or network to discuss a sketch or 
story idea, instead of letting me 
speak to a hireling , who handles 
writers, I am immediately connect- 
ed with Abe Lastfogel or General 
David Sarnoff. Naturally, at the 
moment I am extremely Battered to 
think that these gentlemen should 
be personally interested in my sell- 
ing a five-minute routine to Bob 
Hope, but the period of elation 
quickly disappears when it turns 
out that I am notr^Sam- Katzman. 
A glacier covers the telephone 
wires, arid I feel I had commit- 
ted grand fraud. 

Upon investigation I found the 
cause for the misunderstanding. 
For some unfathomable reason 
high class receptionists; telephone 
Operators arid secretaries cultivate 
British accents, and just as Debo- 
rah Kerr becomes Deborah Karr, 
Sam Kurtzman becomes Sam Katz- 

When my wife reads that Mr. 
Katzman has interviewed a glam- 
our girl for a part, she stops 
talking to me for a week. My 
mother-in-law follows suit, too. 
When my wife showed her a gold 
bracelet and told her that she got 
it from Sam, she asked, “Sam 

Psychiatrists ire no help. One 
explained — it - as 5 Subconscious" 
transference of affection, perfectly 
harmless. Another said it was a 
deep seated craving for fame. A 
third just sent a bill. 

Now, frankly, I have nothing 
against Mr. Sam Katzman, I have 
never met the man, I don’t kno> 
what he looks like. All I know i 
that he makes good pictures, othei 
wise my patients wouldn’t be cor 
gratulating me. All of these e> 
periences* however, are frustratin, 
to riie, and I had to get them off m 
chest. • r ' 

Besides* I hive heard that ther 
Is a possibility that producer Ban 
Katzman is going to be honored b 
Ralph Edwards; on “This Is You 
Life.” If and when you see th 
show and find that the great pre 
ducer is a disheveled, disgruntled 
unhappy neurotic, don’t be sui 
prised. It’ll be me. 

Billy Keaton Named by Buffal 
.' Buff ah 

Variety Cljub of Buffalo, T 
No, 7,: has elected the following 
fleers for 1953-54; Chief Bar] 
Billy Keaton; first assistant bar] 
Marvin Jacobs; second assisl 
barker, Arthur Krolick; dough* 
Robert C. Hyman; secretary, W 
J. Martin. 

„ Newly available is popcorn in five flavors, and ‘eight more are 
cpming up, differently, colored,. Now that the stuff .comes in Tech 
Tricolor, manufacturer$”are negating to make it In fh^’giant Cinema" 
Scope size, but they’re- working on a scheme to produce it in 3 -d" 
That third dimension ought td be— Taste. 

. With , all its miracles, . medicine still has no cure - for. the common 
cold. Film exhibition .Has. an equally baffling problem. It has tvicle- 
screen, three-dimensional visuaP and audio effects, electronic pro jo c- 
tion and a brand-new wonder drug to pull people into the theatres 
something called Marilyn. Monroe. But ihe industry willnevcr feci 
it’s here to stay until sofhebne invents a crackle-ptoof popcorn bay. 

With the general introduction of the king-size screen, the old slogan 
“Movies are better than ever,” should really make way' for “Movies 
are bigger than ever.” .... 

■ Doomed to sure failure is the pitch being made by an Illinois lire, 
works-maker, whpV sending his 60-page catalog to drive-ins. The 
drive-ins don’t have to blast the customers out. FOr that matter, many 
of ’em are doing OK with their films. 

Here’s a switch: Moravia Productions has been formed to make 
films with European settings— in Hollywood! Maybe if they keep at it 
for 18 months/ the producers hope to be declared tax-exeriipt in Inner 

An indie producer whose recent picture was declared by a critic to 
be “wholly lacking in taste”, is using the remark in his advertising, 
along with his switch on a cigaret slogan, “It screens out flavor!” 

Those cigaret manufacturers needn’t think’ they invented the 
“filtered” gimmick. . Movies have been filtered for years — right 
through big cottony wads of censors. 

Two Iowa juveniles, paroled on a burglary rap, were ordered to repay 
the. filched $68, attend church every Sunday, report to the police chief 
weekly and — stay, away from the iriovies for a year. "Could this 
is a way of building up bigger audiences — by letting 'em hunger for a 
while. • - 

Any fair investigation of the judge is sure to prove he owns TV stock. 

Ohio moviegoers, asking the local high school for babysitters, were 
told the rate was 60c hourly, and 50c in TV homes. * . 

(a) The kids, no doubt, pick up the extra dime from the local 
Bijou boys for helping tear ’em away from 4he video sets. 

(b) Blow a picture tube, ya little brats, ya! 

A midwest Ohio theatre owner has engaged as manager a woman 
with no experience — except in bringing up six daughters. This is 
“no experience?” 

And now, If they’ll only fix 3-D so it will give depth to shallow plots! 

While 3-D was just a gleam in an engineer’s eye, the film industry 
was working on a fourth dimensionr— Boxpffice. 

It’s not sure what the widescreen will ultimately dg for the film 
business , but It'll make a lot of doctors richer curing swivel-neck. 

We know a projectionist who was so thin he’d be a flat failure in 3-D. 

; It’s practically a sure thing that a two-dimensional film will ■here- 
after be known in the trade as a Cyclops. 

And one brought into illicit traffic will be Bicyclops. 


Back in the old, old era beyond recall, show busine$s was very "per- 
sonal” and managers and actors judged towns by the quality of the 
coffee, cleanness of the hotel sheets and redness of the customers’ 
necks. In the books of traveling show biz, certain towns were semi- 
permanently on the fritz. They were lemon-sour,, busts, faceless .and 
soulless. They were towns in which you knew the train schedule out 
the second day. They were lulls in existence. Light a candle and 
pray not to be stranded. 

Entertainers were convinced that the adults in certain tough burgs, 
had been so suppressed as children that they were conditioned not to 
express • themselves until asked : — : and they only applauded on ■ direct 
invitation. If a turn didn't know that, they could bow' off in heavy 
mourning. A prominent citizen in the Bible- Belt once met a comic by 
accident socially and said; “Hey,, you were so. durned funny, I could . 
hardly keep from laughing.” 

All this has changed. The hick is gone. The rube is .quaint Amen? 
cana. East, West, North, South — America now shares the same am* 
moniated,- anti-enzymed culture, complete with Technicolor, 3-D, Cine- 
mascope and back-to-back commercial .announcements on radio and 
TV. According to the film company gentry who travel about the coun- 
try setting up premieres, tieups, television spot saturations and so on, 
there are’ Very .few towns that are real. duds. And even the few that 
are deserted villages after 6 p.m.— like, for instance, Baltimore— will 
have an occasional spurt of animation. 

Here are some flippant capsule summations of various film situa- 
tions, today, as culled from the salty dialog of travel-weary exploitcers, 
and about as scientific as most surveys, if you ask us: 

New. York City— Remains the mostest of the bestest as a show town, 
but don’t try to gravy up tripe as truffle. 

.. Chicago — Filmgoing is the second most popular nighttime, winter 
time diversion still. 

Philadelphia— It’s the first most popular here. 

Lqs Angeles — The home of the tWo-theatre, three-theatre, four-tlie? 
atre d ay ^and -date opening. A big matinee town because they 'Want, to 
get in out of the smog! 

San Diegos— A good show town with palmtrees. 

Bakersfield— A good show town with too many earthquakes. 

Las Vegas— Where night is superfluous. 

Portland— Not as bad as Seattle. 

Denver— Where the Post wants four-to-one on the Rocky Mt. News. 

Salt Lake City — A Mormon Milwaukee. 

Topeka— You heaftmo complaints. 

Oklahoma' City— -Baltimore in the oil country, 

Montreal— Canadian television is no competition* 

Detroit-— A town without roots, so they go to the films. 

M® m Phis— Still the week before Christmas. 

Cincinnatti — -A tipoff town. If you do big in Cincy, you’re a wow. 

Baltimore— America’s .seventh largest city and successor to Phila- 
delphia's old early-to-bed motto. . 

41 Forty-eighth M&RtWTi Anniversary Wednesday, January 6, 1954 




starring JANE RUSSELL 
an Edmund Grainger production in 3-D 


: • • • . 




. i '' ■ . ' : __ 










prinfc by TECHNICOLOR 














R K O 



















j Inniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Throwing Shakespeare For A Prat-Fall 


Bill Shakespeare, the theatre man, has a long reach from the grave. 
He comes into the lives of everybody named Pratt, of which I am one. 
In Bill’s time there was an Elizabethan expression, "prat,” wrich 
meant ‘ buttocks,” or the rear part of the anatomy. Bill took up the 

term and used it in a number of his plays. 'Til 
prat you,” one of his characters says, meaning, 
"I’ll spank you.” 

Bill popularized the term so that it came down 
through the years in the theatre, ending up in 
burlesque, where the term, ‘‘pratfall,’* became 
universal. From there it has come into the mod- 
ern colloquial language, with many people now 
using the expression. 

For some time I have appointed myself a com- 
mittee of one Pratt to protect all people named 
Pratt from the misuse of our good name. To all 
who do not know better I point out that a sudden, 
ignominious sitting down on the posterior is a 
"pratfall,” not a "Prattfall,” as some mistakenly 
use it. You take a pratfall as a hyphenated word, in lower case, and 
with only one t. If you don’t, you are out of order. Mr. Webster, 
rival dictionaries, and "The American Thesaurus of Slang,” all sub- 
stantiate this. •: 

The same spelling of the term, with much the same connotation, ap- 
pears for other meanings^ The back pocket of trousers in some cir- 
cles is referred to as a "prat.” In the underworld a "pi-atman” is a 
pickpocket or “prat digger” who goes on a "prat prowl.” This last 
term is also used by the police when conducting the search of a per- 
son’s rear pockets. A "prat cutter” is a pocket knife kept in the hip 
pocket. A “prat poke” is a term for a pocketbook kept in the same 

“pTaceT nr^prat 1 '- also nieahk'^CS^dT^’ay.'^g'^'diKr^'afK^albng;' pre- 
sumably applied because the rear of a person is seen as he leaves. 

Ted Pratt 


One-Man Campaign 

Among those who have, had the excellent wisdom to accept the 
evidence i after I pointed it out to them.) that the term "prat,” arid 
the fine, upstanding name, “Pratt.” have no connection whatever, are 
Variety. Earl Wilson. H. Allen Smith, Robert Wilder, the old N. Y. 
Evening Sun. and another. Bill — William G. Lengel; editor-in-chief of 
Gold Medal Books, publishers of "Escape to Eden,” by a man named 
Pratt, 35c on any paperback rack. 

Life magazine, unlike these, did not acknowledge my correction, but 
after I made it 1 noticed that its spelling improved, at least most of 
the time, or whenever the editors remembered. H. L. Mencken, who 
i* accepted as the last word on these things, uses me as a reference 
authority on the subject, in the second volume of his "American 
Language,” firmly pointing out that it is. prat and not Pratt. 

Mr, John O'Hara, a fine, first-class, exCelleiit author, did not heed any 
correction even from scratch. He knew, being something of a the- 
atre man himself. . When he writes in a story, “You’re going to sit on 
jour prat in Vermont” he knows the right place to sit. and the proper 
way. to express it. Mr. Joel Sayre, however, another writer, is not of 
this calibre . at all. On his st-ory, "The Man on the Ledge,” as pui> 
lished in The Mew Yorker, he has a character named Glaco state, 
"I’ll lay niy prat't on the sill.” Tc.h, tch. New Yorker!;-.. This dangerous 
literary* path leads to making enemies .of : people named Pratt, of which 
there are many thousands in the country. Included is Boris Karloff, 
whose rear name is Pratt, while ah awfuljot of the Standard Oil Co. is 
owned by Pratts. . 

' There is only one problem about all this that we Pratts probably 
never. will be able to lick. When the term is used orally there is no 
way to make a distinctiori between the correct “prat” and the Wrong 
"Pratt.”. Finding some means to pronounce each differently beats us 
• Pratts where it hurts. The only advice I can give the membership on 
this is. when a person uses it in the presence of a Pratt, for the Pratt 
to say. witheringly. “Don’t look at me in your ignorance,” and proceed 
to give cuiting instructions about the term. 

At the - .same time we don't flinch from the use of the term when 
properly applied, for it is a rich and colorful one. To support this 
statement I v.Bh to note that, following the whimsical fashion 6f giv- 
ing names to houses, my heap at Boca Raton in Florida is labelled 
"prat-fall.” That confuses everybody except Elizabethan scholars— 
rather scarce in these parts — and enthusiasts ofWurlesque, of which 
there are quite a few about. 

No Business like Shmoe Business 



And Sbmoe's business is selling 
show business short. 

I’m sure you'll r^jpgnize shmoes 
breed after having imbibed of this 
tiny treatise, regardless of your 
vintage. Actually, Shmoe is age- 
less. He's been around ever since 
Eve broke in her apple act. at 
Locw’s Garden of Eden. At. the 
time Shmoe said, "She'll be a flop. 
The kid needs a wardrobe. 

Does that give you a clue? Sure, 
Shmoe is strictly a. Weeper . . . a 
cry-baby . . . the original "blues” 

It was Shmoe who was first in 
line at., the wailing wall when the 
cinema made its debut. "Who 
wants to watch those jumping, tin- 
types when you can see real flesh- 
and-blood actors?” he asked. “No^ 
body” he answered. ( Shmoe is 
like that — he asks questions and 
then answers them.) "Movies will 
never- last,. They are strictly a nov- 

Later those same jumping tin- 
lypcs gave out with sound and 
Shmoe turned on the tear ducts 
thusly: "People go to a theatre 
to . relax, so you give them talkies 
and wake them up.” Then <cairie 
color and Shmoe again went into 

a dither. "Anyone knows colored 
moving pictures are bad for the 
eyes. Yo.iFIl drive ’em away with 

Yes, the Shmoes are ever with 
us. Today, perhaps, even more 
so than at any time during ' theat- 
rical history, the Shmoes continue 
to be the weeds in the Garden of 
Show Business. They are still try- 
ing to sell the industry short. You 
meet them every day as they lu- 
gubriously bemoan our future. "TV 
is - stealing the show” they say. 
"IIow can the theatres compete 
with free entertainment at home?” 

Well, the answer to that qhe is, 
"What about ‘The Robe,’ ‘Shane,’ 
'From Here To Eternity,’ ‘Band 
Wagon,’ ’Mogambo,’ ‘Little Boy 
Lost,’ ‘Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,’ 
‘Stalag 17,’ among others, Which 
are currently kicking the pants off 
some of the top grosses of the yes- 
teryear, Also ‘Kiss Me Kale,' 
‘Roman Holiday.’ ‘Caine Mutiny,’ 
‘Executive Suite.’ ‘The Cantor 
■Story / ‘Red Garters,’ ‘River Of No 
Return,’ ‘Dial M for Murder,.’ all 
of which should keep the boxoffice 
ticket machines clicking a sweet 

And when a branch of show 
business, such as the movie branch, 


- Currently— - • 

"Take the High Ground” (MGM) 

New York 


, JU 6-4180 


cit 6-2338 

endeavors to march forward with 
the advancing times by making im- 
portant scientific strides via Cine- 
rama, Cineramascope and other 
widescreen processes generally 
(not to mention stereophonic 
sound), the Shmoes wag their 
heads and again tell you it’s all 
in vain- 

For years, the Shmoes have said 
that double bills are a "must” in 
picture houses. T hese'cTai in s h ay e 
been made despite the fact that 
the Interstate Theatre Circuit of 
Texas, guided by the astute Bob 
O’Donnell, has one of the most 
successful and profitable opera- 
tions in the couritry, favoring a 
single bill policy. Interstate and 
O’Donnell have proved over a pe : 
riod of many years that it is not 
necessary to run two features on 
the same program. 

Pictures of the calibre mentioned 
elsewhere in this compendium do 
not require a questionable second 
feature to lend it any boxoffice al- 
lure. I happen to subscribe to that 
school that never believed a ques- 
tionable second feature helped any 
program. I can’t imagine a mer- 
chant featuring one top-grade ar- 
ticle and then throwing in a sec- 
ond shoddy item to attract sales. 
That would tend to ruin any man's 
business eventually. Not content 
with the second questionable fea- 
ture, some of the boys also threw 
in Bingo and Bank Nights, as well 
as other giveaway gimmicks. The 
folks who put it on the line aren’t 
intrigued by that sort of shenani- 
gans any more. It may have served 
its purposes at one time but we 
are in a different business today. 

For next year Metro will make 
only 18 features which is a re- 
duction of about .40 r b compared 
with previous production slates of 
that company. From present in- 
dications this seems to be the trend 
at other studios. These pictures 
will be high budget pictures— made 
by the foremost creative brains in 
the show world — writers, directors 
and producers. With the return 
of top product, as indicated, We 
may anticipate a return to the 
type of showmanship that flour- 
ished during the single bill era. 
Exhibitors having fewer features 
to program will be encouraged to 
properly merchandise quality prod- 
uct. Any exhibitor worthy of the 
name is pro’ud to exploit attractions 
he knows will please his patrons. 
I feel reasonably certain those at- 
tractions will be his good fortune 
from now on. At least there has 
never been such a concentration on 
the making of important pictures 
as there is today. 

No Foresight 

The Shmoes are not content to 
plug an attraction unless the cast 
is headed by some of the stalwarts 
who have proved their worth over 
a period of years. .Far-sighted 'stu- 
dio executives, however, ai^e ever 
developing new talent that will 
some day march in the front ranks 
of the picture parade just as the 
lop stars are doing today. How’s 
a boii t some of these kids, a)l of 
whom have outstanding talent: 
Debbie Reynolds, Rock Hudson, 
Dale Robertson, Jane Powell, Pier 
Angeli, Mitzi Gaynor, Bob Wag- 
ner, Tony Curtis, Keefe Brasselle, 
&nd we could go on almost indefi- 
nitely. They’re all deserving of 


I've been spat at and thrown at 
And I've ducked evil passes; 
But they wouldn't dam hit hie 
While I'm wearing glasses. 

Theatre TV: 

Theatre? TV for Gus H. Fanno 
Has a simple frame— 

Notre Dame and Marciano, 

Or Marciano and Notre Dame. 

Subscription TV: 

The list of things you get for free 
They carefully finecomb. 

Now comes subscription-type TV: 
You. pay io stay at home. 


Whether your show is a hit so grand 
Or a flop without any skill, 

It's bound to get at least one hand— 

Your Uncle Sam's— in the till. 


Lots of pundits, lots of strictures; 

What this business needs is pictures. 

Stereo Sound: 

Stereo sound will improve, It appears. 

Wish I could say the same for my ears. 

Vandalism : . 

I wonder where the well-bred kid . 

With cheeks so healthy pink went 
And what the devil changed him 
To a juvenile delinquent. 

.. r . Recording: 

For one poor, lonely little soul 
They’re throwing out a dragnet. 

He ruiried a juncture — one whole roll— 

By passing with a magnet. 

Overseas Shooting: 

It’s fun in Paris and fun in Rome 
Or Bangkok or Madrid. 

• As long as your pictures are bought back home 
And they let you return here, kid. 


A critic reviewing a brand new show, 

Like a gal asked to transgress, 

May feel more honest saying no. 

But more popular saying yes. 



The gents from Washington want to be sure 
That films are ideologically pure. 

If the job they do is extra good, 

They’ll have to call filmland HOLY wood. 


Drive-in owners knock, on wood 
With refreshment business good.- 

Bad films never leave 'em flustered, 

"Like when they run ' out of mustard. 


The dubbing of pictures is strictly a plus-— 

The foreigners speak so much better than us. 

Folkways Dept.: 

I used to neck at the movies when 
They made my passions smoulder. 

I wonder — were films hotter then 
Or am I that much older? 


Film hope still springs 
With yearning eternal 

For favorable things 
lit the Wall Street Joutnah 

proper exploitation— the kind that 
pays big dividends. 

Reluming to Shmoe and his 
relatives (and we’re throwing in 
his relatives because they should 
be ‘‘thrown in”), they have a way 
of sounding off to the press pe- 
riodically about Show Business. 
Arid do they have anything good 
to say to the press about that sarrie 
Show Business from which they 
derive their livelihood? (And 
aren’t you the funny one to ask 
such a question?) . 

Tile Shmoes are truly our Am- 
bassadors of No-Good Will. They 
tell the press about the poor at- 
tractions that are being produced, 
about the bad business being done, 
about fhe theatres that are clos-l 
ing or will soon close. Can you 
imagine Gimbel, Macy and Saks 
giving out with such dirgey dialog 
; about their business, their riier- 

chand^ie7\their stores,, their 
future? . n. 

Then yoU'll find Shmoe, among 
the exhibitors, taking pot-shots at 
Shmoe, among the distributors, 
and vice versa. They, air their 
troubles before the world and that 
same world raises its eyebrows 
and wonders. 

Withal, let it be said to the 
credit of all concerned that the 
Shmoes herein depicted are not 
typical but you and I know they 
exist. . ... 

Fortunately, the great majority 
of showfolk march along with h* 
ving Berlin .singing, "There's ho 
Business Like Show , Business; 
And they, really mean it. That s 
why it’ll always be. a great busi- 
ness despite the. Shmoes in our 
ranks Whose mournful mou things 
will '.continue' 'to give us a pain m 
the prattle. 

tt^neday,' Jynng«7 6» I95A 

Forty -eighth 




Or Backwoods, H’wood Seeks It Out 



^ long time I’ve been hearing that film stars can 
ro \/Lcized manufactured, turned out on an assembly 
1 wi *. h this goes the old chestnut about “for every 

_ . _ 1 (k ilAffAM, AMli«k11«* MM umm'm 

be synt 

— tn0 there are at least a dozen equally or more 
star on » talented and deserving actors who ~ 

just weren’t as lucky.’’ 

Can a film star actually be synthe- 

Is it really all in the, breaks and 
the buildup? 

To begin with, naturally there is 
no denying that there is some element 
of luck in any career. Ir a certain 
sense there isn’t a day goes by but 
what sheer chance influences our 
lives, including the fact that sheer 
chance could have ended your life in 
a traffic accident an hour ago. 

Richard Thorp j n that sense, luck enters into every 

success in any field of human endeavor. 

But in the sense that the fates play dice to see who 
is going to be a success pic star and who is not, I’m afraid 
that success and failure aren’t that arbitrary. 

The crucial, inescapable fact is that with Hollywood’s 
tremendous demand for. new faces and its Vast and elabo- 
rate machinery for searching out promising newcomers, it 
is virtually impossible for genuine talent to remain un- 
recognized in America today. 

On the other hand, Hollywood and its public are so 
critically discriminating, and the profession of acting is so 
fiercely competitive, that the spurious and the mediocre 
can’t masquerade for long without being spotted and sent 
to the foot of the class. 

If there were some way to turn out film stars on an 
assembly line, I will be cynical enough to say that Holly- 
wood would probably embrace it, inasmuch as such a sys- 
tem would eliminate the necessity for the hundreds of 
Thousands of dollars It' now spends annually 7 !?! the honest 
search for real talent. 

If you know some way to synthetically turn out and 
deliver a Gary Cooper, Bing Crosby, Audrey Hepburn, 
Lana Turner, Gregory Peck, Jack Palarice, Doris Day or 
a Jean Simmons, then you should drop everything arid 
hurry to Hollywood. There’s a fortune waiting for you 
here. ' 

There is an entire, elaborate and handsomely-rewarded 
stratum of the motion picture industry which devotes- its 
energies exclusively to the assaying, discovery and intro- 
duction of bona-fide promising picture personalities. 

studio, bringing the complicated, financial organization out 
of the red and into the. black within the course of a few 
pictures. '• 

Deanna Durbin is generally credited with having turned 
^etabies for one major studio, alone and single-handed, 
with, the series of pictures which made her top boxofficc. 

In any event, a marquee name is money in the bank as 
far as Hollywood is concerned. 

If there) were any easy way of creating stars, or of 
finding them, the picture industry would long ago have 
uncovered it. ■ There isn’t an. easy way, \ ' ■ 

Great screen personalities are. rare and cannot be coun- 
terfeited. The only way to find them is the Way we do it 
now get out in the bush leagues and the backwoods, and 
everlastingly search for the real McCoy, 

1'"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! """"m«"iiiiii'i'i.ii MiiumuiiiMin,.uimm 

| 3 MriMii.i,iinnilmiiii|iun. mu iiiiiiu.iiniiiiiliuiiiii ‘ 

3.3 ' 





S X 

: 5 
S r 


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f I 

S ” '•MiimmiMiufmiMmmiMiimiiimmimiMt 

Joey Adams 

Career In Itself 

The ability to recognize such talent is a career in itself. 

The men who have this gift are respected and rewarded 
for. it. In Hollywood few honors are as bright or as endur- 
ing as the credit for having discovered a top star or stars. 
(Parenthetically, it can be pointed out that this facility 
does not hinge On recognizing a physical resemblance 
between an unknown and a popular star. A prime requi- 
site is that the newcomer offer a personality that is utterly 
unlike that of any established stars.) 

This has resulted, naturally, in the keenest competition 
imaginable in the realm of talent-scouting. And this 
situation, in turn, brings on both a promise and a threat to 

The threat lies in the fact that producers, directors, 
talent scouts; agents and others in a- position to discover 
new talent, acquire ail almost critically grim, cynicism in 
their hard-boiled, cold appraisal of newcomers. 

This doesn’t mean that they are rude or unsympathetic 
or even indifferent. It simply means that- they are most 
difficult to impress. 

On the other hand, the promise lies in the „fact that 
these men are all desperately anxious to uncover real pay 
dirt, and to recognize it when they find it. 

The single accomplishment of spotting an unknown girl 
in an obscure little theatre performance and recognizing' 
her as a great star of tomorrow — and being vindicated in 
your conviction by her subsequent success — alone and in 
itself is enough to launch one on a fabulous career as a 
talent scout. 

, .The screening process in this eternal and universal 
9 l 8ging for boxoffice gold in the form of new personalities 
•s thorough and all of it is dedicated to the one goal of 
finding potential future stars, wherever, they might be; 

It is so thorough, in fact, that it is pretty difficult for a 
really promising riewcoiner to escape the net that the 
Notion picture industry spreads across the Country. A 
report that an unusually gifted young player is making an 
appearance with some remote and obscure little theatre 
group is sometimes enough to have four major studios 
ny high-salaried talent scouts across the country to see 
the performance . in the hope of finding a real talent 

IM( T) r . * A w-v a i 5 

l * 1 *. - tty Iff g A B lAJfIS 

The Schnoz was hitting on all 88. when he said, “Every- 
body, wanta get inta de act.” From the Halls of Madison 
Square Garden to the Shores of The Neversink, I have 
circled and cornered by scares who insist, “I got a 
joke for ya!” 

The Civilian is never content with 
merely telling you a joke. He wants 
to be physically inducted into the 
Army of Comedians. He figures he 
hasn’t earned his stripes until he gets 
you in a half-nelson and pins you to 
the wall while he convulses himself 
by telling you an old joke that some- 
body probably discarded 20 years ago. 

Then there’s the Lampshade Wear- 
er who gets a death grip on you as 
you’re in the wings ready to go on. 
Your intro music is always the cue 
for this clown to hiss, “I got a joke 
for ya!” Try giving him a polite brush and right away you 
make a lifeffong enemy. 

“Big Man,’’ he’ll scream. “I useta watch him from the 
-balcony— when— he-worked Loweys— Boro- Park for peari uts; ~~ 
I useta, feed the bum When he didn’t have what feat.’’ If 
all the guys fed me who claimed they did. I’d make Fat 
Jack Leonard look like a thermometer. Besides, if this 
Character had all the loot to feed me, what was he doing in 
the balcony? 

The Louis Hayward approach is the most dangerous. 
This type stabs you in the chest with his finger (a la 
D’Artagnan in “The Three Musketeers”) while telling you 
his joke. Of course, you’re always too polite to inform 
them it’s a Moran & Mack oldie because they’re doubled 
up hysterically relating the punchline. 

The Torture Boys are the ones to look out for. They 
are the Back-Bangers, Hair-Mussers and Cheek-Pullers who 
can usually be counted upon to know the latest dirty joke 
with every naughty word in the book. These guys would 
make B.S. Puffy and Belie Barth blush. Their topper 
invariably is, “You can clean it up!!” . 

Happy Harry The Highway Hazard is never content 
with merely waving Hello in traffic. Our- Hero makes a 
“U” turn, races his hot rod like it’s the last lap on the 
Indianapolis Speedway and weaves in and out of the cars. 

. He’s not satisfied until he runs you up a pole, if need 
be, to tell his gag. 

I like being a comedian and I love being recognized, 
but ... . 

How about the time I was doing the impression bit 
with a young gal in her teens when a man who could 
barely walk comes Up to me. He looked like. 108 and his 
bones creaked as he lowered himself into a chair 1 did 
not invite him to take; He wheezed, “Joey Adams! I 
haven’t seen you since you entertained at my bar mitzvah!” 

Quiz Showoffs 

Scouts Are Everywhere 

anT 1 . erc * s . hardly an opening performance presented by 
M^le theatre or amateur troupe in America 
evw'f • is not covered by Hollywood scouts. These 
tifth 1 1 "i 1 ’*- or telephone their reports and recomirienda- 
if n lo i* 1 . 0 * 1, Hollywood bosses right' after the show, and 
niff o j they’ve found something hot, they will get 
and grab a phone before the first act is over, 
course, being ail too human, scouts make mistakes, 
bosses, figure on a reasonable percentage of. bad 
guesses. Hundreds of thousands of dollars are written off 
nnually in salaries and other expenses connected with the 
gaibg . 3nd coaching of promising newcomers who never 

quite pan out. ■ , 

„3 er y year dozens of such players are signed to terip 
tho « acts ’ brou eht to Hollywood, given the advantages of 
fiiA v an< ^ m ost expensive voice arid acting coaches in 
bv n ' V0 — ’ Sometimes the studio adds to the investment 
event".? for Plastic surgery, expensive dental work,, and 
n stakes the newcomer to a personal wardrobe. 

nilgb t 8P on for a year or two years without the 
en i n r P fu. er on ce appearing in a picture. Then, at the 
ofP thls Period, the studio may change its. mind, write 

call it quits. . 

sudriftn? oav ® been instances in which a single player has 
emerged to turn the tide of fortune for the entire 

Other Jolly Joes 

Why No Capital Gain 
For Creators Also? 


Our nation is still proceeding to discriminate in many 
ways against creative ability. The vicepresident of a hair- 
pin company .is in a position io get vast tax advantages 

which, by arid large, have not been made available to 

writers, actors, directors and that ele- 
ment of our society which determines 
riot only our culture but which gen- 
erates the ideas needed to raise our 
standard of living. ’ 

: The important employees of most 
American corporations are put in a 
position where they can obtain wealth 
in the only form where it has substan- 
tial dollar value, i.e., in the form of 
capital gains. Practically every big 
American company finds that its top 
employees see little value in in- 
m v • Cmct creased annual salaries since the em- 
ployees! are aware of the fact that, 
realistically they are little more than tax Collectors for 
Uncle Sam at 20c on the dollar. Hence, the corporations, 
in order to procure more productivity from the brains in 
their companies, have accorded stock options to top em- 
ployees. Our laws; which have always favored large: 
corporations as against the creative sectors of our society, 
provide that there is no tax on the option when received, 

and. properly handled, the profit, ultimately obtained oil 
the exercise' of the option and the sale of the stock pur- 
chased pursuant to it, is taxable at the prevalent capital 
gains rate of 25 or 26% as compared to the possible 80% 
Which would be imposed on increased salaries. 

I doubt if there is any valid factual or legal reason why 
the writer of a play or film, the actor who gives real life to 
a picture or a play, the top producer of a television pro- 
gram, or any important cultural creator of important liter- 
ary and artistic property, cannot get himself into that rare 
.preferential ^group -of -American -entrepreneurs, Lhe— oce--- 
shotters in the market place, for whom the capital gains 
tax provision was primarily written into our laws.- Isn’t 
it ‘really an insane society where the top thinking people, 
except for a few who have established their own individual 
enterprises, continue to get paid in astronomical dollars— 
two, three, five and $10,000 a week, which have np relation 
to actual take-home pay. Such salaries Create a burden on 
our economy and are important only because they satisfy 
the egos of foolish employees. 

For further relief, whenever the entertainment groups 
feel keenly enough the present discrimination levelled 
against them, there is little doubt but that they can create 
the greatest lobby ever existing in our nation arid get 
much needed relief from the Congress of the United 

The Who Am I? or Remember Me? approach is the 
gasser. This type begins his onslaught by first blocking 
out your line of vision. This is accomplished by the sim- 
ple expedient of planting his body directly in front of 
yours. Head high, arms akiiribo and eyebrows raised, he 
jariis his kisser right into yours arid bellows, “Well? ... 
Where do ya know me from?” 

Like this clown in Albany who was annoyed. “So ya 
don’t remember me, eh? Will you feel like a jerk when 
I tell ya. Did you once work with a fighter? Is his name 
Tony Carizoneri? Do you know his manager? Well, his 
best friend and my best friend are cousins.” If you take 
these guys. seriously you have to wind up saying hello to 
lampposts and cigarstore Indians. 

Every group or party has its Monster rif Ceremonies. 
This harmless character hits you with staleys like, “Actors 
eat too/huh?” are of you’re smoking with a holder, “Doc- 
tor told you to stay away from cigarets, huh?” This is 
the signal for their friends to fall on the floor, get hysteri- 
cal, smack the table and wipe their eyes. If the most you 
can muster is a weak smile, they usually sneer, "Whassa 
matter? Ya only laugh at your own jokes?” 

Then, there is the friendly killer who spends his off 
hours doing research. His idea of a perfect evening is to 
espy a celebrity and call him by his real name; He blows 
his top when he can yell, “Aaron Clnvatt” to Red Buttons, 
“How is Milton Berlinger?” 

One of these pally pallbearers was in the audience one 
night when I did a particularly good show. After he 
Joey Abrains-ed me three times, he said. “I don’t care 
What they say, I like you.” “W-W-What do they say?” I 
Whimpered. “Well, I hadda fight three guys for ya, 
pal, but I still like the old stuff no matter how many times 
I hear it!” 

Nate Blumberc 

The one to watch is the fellow who greets you after the 
best show of your life. He’s the one with the friendly hay- 
maker. “Wot was the matter wit ya? You ain’t yourself 
tonight. What threw ya, kid, the mike? Aah, don’t let it 
worry ya, everybody’s entitled to an off day. 

When I made the Red Apple Route years ago— Years 
Labor Day !-^there was always one joker who began 
the “Whaddya do Inna winter — wear an overcoat routine. 
This the forerunner of the crazy mixed-up kid, is the 
same joker who digs you now in a movie theatre. ^ By 
some quirk of seating you are facing the screen. You have 
popcorn in one hand, a girl in the other and polaroids in 
the other (three-dimension!)* His opening line must be* 
“What’re you doin’ here?” 


(Chairman oj the Board , Universal Pictures) 


The past year in our industry has been one. of the most 
significant. The big question is: Will the impetus given 
to us by technical improvements stand us well for the 
future. • 1 

All through our industry’s history 
we have benefited by scientific prog- 
ress. But as we look back (and \ye 
must look back in order to look 
ahead), we see in retrospect that tech- 
nology is not the final answer. 

If it Were, then all our problems 
would have been over with the com- 
ing of sound and color. 

We might as well face this fact: 

Processes, Without good entertain- 
ment, will stimulate the boxoffice for 
an interval but are not the answer to 
the future. 

The real answer is, of course, tho 
entertainment value that we. put in pictures. 

For the past year we have given the motion picture 
audiences throughout the world the best pictures in our 
50-year history. 

In this country these good pictures produced big grosses 
despite the competition of television. 

The public responded to good entertainment just as it 
always did in the past. 

Our job is to maintain this high level of entertaining 

pictures. . 

There is only one way to accomplish this. First, we 
must mind our business and worry sff>out nothing except 
those things that must be put into successful pictures. 

There is no secret formula. It’s a wide-open book. 

Our biggest problem involves stories arid personalities. 
The second problem involves the selling job that is re- 
quired oil every picture. ' . . k 

It is always difficult to find the right stories and just 
as difficult to cast them properly. But onjpc this is done, 
then we must put everything we have “behind the selling 

Exhibitors share this responsibility with distributors. 

Selling on the local level is just as important as the pre- 
selling national campaigns conducted by the distributors. 

With more and more television stations, the local ex- 
hibitor must recognize the value of local television spot 
selling. There is no reason why cooperative plans for 
television advertising can not be developed with distribu- 
tors. In fact, our company already has successfully done 

But as important as the foregoing is to the future, our 
state of mind is just as important. ; 

Let us quit airing our problems in public. This always 
hurts and certainly, does not make for good public rela- 
tions. V " ' M , 

As I have often said in the past, every person who 
makes a living in this business should be a committee of 
one to talk well, not only of the future Jutofth^ present. ■ 

We are one of the country’s vital industries. Lets not 
sell ourselves short. The best is yet to come. 

JftMiuj 4, 1W4 

rr ~ -- - 

Forty -eighth I'ijjjfE&Y Anniversary 

In Los Angeles 

New York, Miami and Philly! 

Nationally Starting Jan. 30 ! 





With Jack Benny 

■ (NBC-TV) 

2!i/ NOVEMB 


3'i' NOVEMB 




5//// DECEMB 

* .’A . 1 All - 


■ (CBS’TV ) 1 







' ' -(NBC-TV)- 





With Keefe Brassellt 

With Eddie Fisher 
and Frank Sinatra 


With Keefe Brassellt 



With Keefe Brasselle 

With Keefe Brasselle 


With Eddie Cantor 

R 27- 

With Jimmy Durante, 
Donald O’Connor and 
Dennis Day appearing 

R 29-THE EDDIE FISHER SHOW srs' c ‘"“ 


With Eddie Cantor 


With Eddie Cantor 








Personal appearances by 
New York, 

And more still to 

Brasselle on the top local shows (Tex ft Jinx, etc., etc.) in 
.Cleveland, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Washington, Providence. 

Newspaper interviews, contests, feature stories, photo layouts, magazine coverage galore - 
plus sock-packed 20-second and 1 -minute TV commercials! 

THE CAPITOL RECORD COMPANY BREAKS A RECORD! Even before picture’s release 
all 35,000 albums of Cantor’s 15 off-the-sound-track songs sold out in 2 weeks!! 

New pressing now in 


He becomes a star 
of stars -as Eddie Cantor : 


WILL ROGERS, Jr. ashis dad 

iFDnh/ir \A/cinMAM TFn ^hFRDFMAN and SIDNEY SKOLSKY •• wooucea ■v SIDNEY SKOLSKY • omtcTcoev ALFRED E. GREEN 



Forty-eighth Ansuvermry 

Wednesday, January 

CATHEDRAL COMPLETES p«°ductionjode changes 
FIRST THEATRICAL PIC EriC DeIaye^ l lJnSl l, Jan. 13 

-Who’s In It?’: Exhibs 

sssssss Continued from page 5 sss 

Hollywood. A n f Amprioa' fa— — — r-» : - 

exWbftlon 5 in* ? cL°rches°^ Cathedral board meeting on revising the Pro- name cannot carry a bad picture ward the gradual elimination of 
FHms has completed its first pic- duction Code, which had been in- a nd evert the biggest b.o. names double features. More big pictures, 
Bv AL LICHTMAN ' ture for theatrical release. Film, tended for this we ® k » s must be buttressed by good stories fewer pictures, longer runs and a 

Mth-Fox Distribution Director) titled “The Magnificent Adveiv ded fpr hext weeK, prop u ^ and sound production Valdes if more selective audience than ever 

H has been pretty obvious that ^ they are io stuy a t to P . ' 

imly important eating Pictures JK be re ^ aSed *“ ' * Coast stay and is now expected in Generally speaking, there has W l ” ment wlU s *> eed ,««*■ » 

can be marketed profitably in the _ Picture was produced by Rev Gothjm, on- Erie . D e aT been ' In ' i h . .... 

can pc 

8 r t "“ D ; James K Friedrich and directed by Meanwhile, the^r Eric-Dear ^ of the in- In my opinion, the greatest cur, 

, and this is^true ^first ■> , with ' Nelson Leigh, ?am” exchange of letters between dustry lately. But .there rent detriment to the motion nic. 

At Lichtman 

ru n theatres John Coyle, • with: .NOlsaii.. Leigh, ^ <*cl»ange, ot letters .wween dustr y lately. B«t thew f h 0uld be ren t detriment to the motion pic 

^e‘ S * Grand0n “^i last Sy» W. admission 

politan situa- Rhodes in top roies. this round, Goldwyn took issue s0 many mutual problems. With pnees. The movies have always 

tions as well . . , tT a n \ with Johnston’s statement that Hollywood pinned down by the rated as family entertainment, but 

as theatres in Extras UlHOIl PaCI Amendments and changes from creative emergencies which have the price scales in the majority of 

smaller com- . " AU - UUI T ;“| a ^ time to time had. kept the Code ari s e n from various new presents- theatres today make movie enin* 

mumties, in- Hollywood. up to date. Goldwyn complained tion methods, the burden of maih- l ; 9 ' a . ay make n } ovlergoln S 

eluding subse- Agreement for a revision of the that “only a few minor amend- taining a proper liaison between an extreme luxury for the average 

quent runs in basic contract between the Screen ments” had been made. He de- the showmen and the studios rests family. The success of the lower- 

the big cities. Extras Guild and the .Assn, of Mo- clared the Code has ceased to be more than ever before on the priced driveins, and particularly 

M akin g tion Picture Producers has been « a living document.” shoulders of distribution. their “all inclusive” familv rathe 

them bigger reached. Either party may reopen Also last Thursday, N. Y.’s Her- wherever it is practicable, I i l ! ! ‘ 

on# 1 Kottor aid Tribune became one; of the t h^ ^ e^ibl?or P ^3uid^ ^isit ^bstantiates this The public has 

politan situa- 
tions as well 
as theatres in 
smaller com- 
munities, in- 
cluding subse- 

t h e m bigger reached. Either ] party may reopen 
and better the pact after two years. 

problem of shuttered theatres. Do- been approved by the guild’s board W yn, The producer s piten lor up- be given the freedom of every lot but today it 

lng away with the admissions tax, and. will be submitted to the mem- dating the Code “was certain to and efforts should be made to ment as caref 

Particularly On admissions up to bership for mail referendum. set Hollywood to talking, and per- thoroughly indoctrinate him with dise bargains. 

. • P.hftP0AC IflVOlVP HflV ‘ nikpc 'Trip Uhnn .'a4iam f a fkinlriiirf V 4 Via h . j n ' .u. ^ r f . J. . 

carefully as for merchan- 

C’Scope Vs. Duals 

s Continued from page 8 — - 

Si or even as Imv as >5c g^s a ■ Chafes involve pay^ hikes for haps even to thinking^ stated the Se production side of the industry. 

$1, or even *s ..low as 7pq gives a- general extras from the present h-T. It added: “Mr. Goldwyn has The welcome mat is always out at 
chance for survival to a great many $ 18<50 da ii y to $19.43; dress extras, sa i d in brief that the present film my studio office and I never start 
houses. riders and dancers from the cur- morality code has become out- preparations for a picture without 

Naturally, from our point ; of rent $25 to $26.25, and standins nioded since its imposition in 1930, first trying to evaluate it from the 
view, Cinemascope has served as from $17 to $17.85. that a tendency to by-pass it has exhibitor’s standpoint. ■ ~ — - ■ » 

probably the biggest business slim- .' " 7 “ \ .. . ! ^^Sh/SSSSSlZ^- l Sales P«pt.’s Groat Value 1 

tilant for the past year, and prom- CAPAltfll FillHC ods up to date. All of this sounds I very definitely believe that the be expected. * 

ise of bigger and better pictures rQlMIgll l IIIIK) like good common sense . . . Both sales department should take more j — ■■ ■ -- • q; / important Ton : — I 

aeems wrapped up in the schedules ' r<in( | nllpH frnm . ■■ the industry and audiences are be- active participation 1 ' in shaping pro- L . t 

*!' ™ L — Continued trom P ate 5 ===* coming more and more aware that, duction po licy. It. is c e rtainly la _At 20th Century-Fox we as^jmsr^ 

pre$enrcbde^aoesnT meel to- great advantage to producers to giving . considerable thought^ to 
ioci UCin ^ m ■ nema p "They’d do better forgetting all day’s requirements, and that too. receive the widest possible reports our short-subject program. These 

■ .. , about the U.S.,” he opined. “Who much censorship is as undesirable on reactions to his pictures to guide mu ?t not be shoddy or lacking in 

Eike subscription TV, Eidophor wants a replica of a Hollywood pic- as too little.” i 

Ip its i own way combines aspects of ture irt French- or Italian?”. Davis 
television and motion pictures as thought dubbed pix were problems, 
a direct boon for the'theatre. Eido- for ■'.the indies since “they are 
phor currently nearing the com- neither fish nor fowl.” In addi- 
pletion of its engineering phase* tion, he pointed out, they require 

will provide added boxoffice lm- more prints and a considerable — — - 

petus in the theatre, when its live amoun t of ’ a dd ed accessories. ent, most exhibitors have a tendency 
entertainment will supplement the Downbeat approach isn’t shared to resist such attractions With the structive help 
film fare. by all of the importers. George p i a int, “we’ve got nobody in it to I feel that p] 

Naturally it will have to be Schwartz of Times Films Corp. sell.” more for personal appearances, not 

much superior to the brand of said his “Forbidden Games” had HollVWod is continually preoc- only in connection with their filmi 

entertainment currently beamed lived .up to expectations and he cunied^with thedevefopment of but for important charity functions 

into homes under the sponsorship expected *54 to be a better year for VYnurpvpr 1 Sip miPQt and public affairs at which their _ \ J ^,1' ^ * 

him in planning new films. Box- variety, because there is the wide 
office figures are a yardstick of field of., music,, sporting events, 

I success or failure but they don’t spectacles of all kinds, as well as 
tell what was wrong or what to do the lure of travel to draw from, 
in the future. The sales depart- We have already completed our 
ment, with its close exhibitor con- ^st short subject, “Vesuvius Ex- 
— t tracts, is in a much better position press, which shows the wonders 

glaiut, <Wv* got B .b.d y in it to „^elti^^^h<mldbg Used » 

Stars Vs. Offbeat Pix 

Continued from page. 5 

S‘ad^roro;'S {or^the'elusivo'diements'udiiA^o attendahee wfu^gafn respdet "fob $£, 

will not be willing to pay for some- developing product shortage. Also, t ke UD a successful new star the industry. I think b.o. figures 'Jli? 

thing they can get for nothing. he said, foreign producers have be- . ^ ak ® p .. v Spr in rpepJt will substantiate the value of this 5 a til ’ 

is not an easy matter. In recent 

On the subject of TV, since it is m®« down-to-earth in their ” 0 “Ss" HblSwood”can “potaT'to in specific instances and, in gen- ^ ^ 

e chief source of boxoffice ills, demands a view which finds him the ascension of a bright new star eral, that such appearances con- 1 f t ,_- ijfcl J o smmd “A Dav 
ere are a few aspects which may "} h er^diitribs dlsagreement Wlth in the case of Audrey Hepburn; tribute greatly toward promoting a j e t Carrier,” and also will 
rve to explain certain stands ^ difthlMles run int0 and, in our own particular, com- tat«est ,n new personalities. probe the subma - rlne marve)s of 

ken by the industry or individual di.rinPtbPn^tv^r P“fiy, we have great hopes for Although Hollywood’s public re- Florida. Under the guidance of 

there are a few aspects which may 1! J en \P^ a ^ disagreement With 
serve to explain certain stands P t ^ r <li s*: r ibs. ^ ' . 

taken by the industry or individual 

One of the diffi'MiltiPQ run into <U1W * 111 UU1 jidHiuuwi . wm- •. proDe me suomanne marveis oi 

by the fndies durinc the nast vear pany ' we have great hopes for Although Hollywood’s public re- Florida. Under the guidance of 
esneciallv in NY was the lark of Ma rjie Millar, who we entrusted latlons have had numerous set- p au i Mantz we are going to show 

cdpciriauj Hi W da lilt? LdUL Oi ...Yzu 4-u^ a UaJ • d. nar»lrc Hurincr f Via nact vdar nr ch _ii Vt_ ?ii- a* ^ al. 

pqnppiallv in NY wan tha lont nf iviarjie xvuiiui, wuu wc cnuuatcu uuuivivug ManiZ We are going 10 SHOW 

In the case of star appearances nroner outlets ' Town has olentv with the female lead in Martin & backs during the Past year or so, a ii the thrills of aviation, the 

on TV, there is little one can do of firstrun arties hut the Sr Lewis’ “Money From Home” and I sincerely believe that they, are Tournament of Roses at Pasadena 

to control stars who are freelancing distribs ^ “discovered” them ingenue lead with Shirley now improving. But not as substan- has been fully recorded, and Rob- 

(and most of the top ones are) from i aun chine places for their offbeat B6 °t h and Robert Ryan in “About, tially as they cquld be. GOMPO er t Webb is heading an expedition 
videocasting Naturally.; if they • AmS- Mrs ’ Leslie.” ^ ^l^U S Se & ° f Venezuela. 

can be seen for free, there is less can releases like “Lili” and “The Player personal appearances cer- ^onort that it d^erJed S own through XhnemaScope these 

reason for the public to pay ad- Actress” tied up houses for months tainly are effective. Players prop- support mat it aeservea. things will not merely have the 

mission at theatres to see them, add ition some of the circuits edly presented to the public are Seriously needed is a vigorous, effect of a reproduction, but will 
However, if handled properly, a themselves began acquiring prod- the best public relations Hollywood constructive public relations policy give the viewer the effect of actu- 

Btar’s TV appearances may be uc t w hi c h then got preferential can employ. The recent COMPO which carries over and beyond the ally being there. And there is no 

beneficial in a publicity sense, out- treatment in the showcasing tours, I think, proved this. The question of censorship. When the limit to the diversity of world 

weighing the free appearances. Terming 1953 a mediocre year tonic effect of such appearances on industry is stricken with business wonders waiting to be recorded. 
T~ Time Will Tell ~~ i but “not a bad one" for foreign^ "the boxoffice in the areas affected ills, too much attention is given to . 

— r~ — films, Richard Brandt, Trans-Lux certainly establish the wisdom of groaning and moaning in the pub- r- — • - — • — ’ " 

Concerning the extent to which circuit topper, said the biggest such tours. ■ J 1C Prints and not enough is given ■■ ■ . ' - 'mjf'_i w _ ■ 

should thing that had Happened to the Whether studios are wise in ^th" "fntem'e.n, “Sni.f 111110118 ¥811168 

produce pictures for TV and co- j jR e j d in ’53 Was the appearance of dropping many contract players |! llnkm S ^ ir, Lellig en t lnstitu- . . ™ 

operate on subscription TV, only ife. "At least exhibitors know and depriving themselves 5 o£ a ^ lc ff; ,, r* ^ Continued from rose s =. 

time and economic necessity can thYv ran tn tff. anri ho hanwi som ® of the Lnest public relation ■■ 

Continued from page 5 

organized business o« n f.icino f nr oi„n “ v; ^ ^ * v “ , iaiea nanaouis ana ine nutf ana • in casting, me inaepenacni j» 

It is in business to make money due to changing brolection meth- be ternTeA ‘Xxu^^Denditures 3 " puffs which many executives and not limited to a studio talent ros- 

for its stockholders, and if and “Ss ^ in the Free^%^ stars consider of major. importance^ ter This freedom frequently re- 

when the TV medium, either Apart from dubbing, consensus talent are alwavs available and The production economies which suits m dynamic star combinations 
through subscription TV or any i 0 f opinion is that foreign 'imports while it is ImbbitanFlor studios to kave resulted from the “shaking that would not otherwise be. p'os- 

other manner presents a proHtablc j sun have extremely limited scope develop young ^ peorde and live down" process going on within the sible. The teaming of Humphrey 

opportunity to produce for that and will continue that way. Good them sO-caHed star 1 buildups. 8 tHe are <* r ‘a' .important 2;??,^. 

.Li „„ _ a n . . . * — wane ix, 10 ijuuvitaiit ivi oii'Uiuo 

InlriMiitv ; n P ; I 3 P f° fl C * ! sti11 have extremely limited scope develop young people and give 
SSSnlim ^ 0d i ucc . t for ^ hat and will continue that way. Good them so-called star buildups,, the 

<inn f nr th/irn 0n p ^° du -n example is the Italo “The Little studios are now considerably more 

in 9e 1 ^ i b0 - h ’ n » wl World of Don Camillo” which got "selective" in accomplishing this 

do so, as its first duty is that of critical, raves but didn’t do much a j m 

earning money for its investors. ! business. Pic’s offbeat theme bit- ’ , 

1JOVC JLCOUHCU A1U1U tile alldAillg v * ** v " I 

down” process going on within the sible - Th © teaming of Humphrey 

«... A. _ f • i - -j TJ nrTOt»f nti/1 Ann O otirltinw l V» 

^ ' — ww.w., I IJ UOllivOOi X 1L O UUUCOl tliClllC MIL- rjHAflii AAf-l — -f AAiiwrn . w mi • * r . . 

Our primary thinking is the ting priest vs. Communist-is partly Fr ? u “ : l0 . 1 ? cos • ' yays produced something better tude is an . asset in the selection 

creation of motion pictures for blamed for the lackadaisical audi- {: a Whether _ this is tharithat which existed before, and of writers, directors and other key 

theatres with the hope that ence response. Importers claim f5 0 ar w!?il^v^ wl emergencies we have f a ced re- artists. 

through CinemaScope and other that a number of good European Cent l y ka . ve 1 ffspired some mighty Because independent production 

future developments we can create productions, such as "The Wages JVJ?® pp ^ al , e ^ ^ constructive thinking. is notably- free of restraint and in- 

superior entertainment that will of Fear,” the Venice festival win- .^hiwtor I don’t mean to infer that costly terference, it attracts the finest 

policy to the exclusion of anything ff A Rp-Flprk Yanipll nomicarbiidieirS Tane rea" ! l l . akes b i' a i ns ’ more than dollars, achieve creative liberty. It is an 

else, and we are greatly encour- vvfi IVC LlCtlo Idincll nomicai ouagets witnout % sane 1 ea to insure this. , equally compelling advantage to- 

aged by the public’s response to Hollywood. . I believe that the studios are <lay. 

our first two CinemaScope pic- Board of directors of Color Corp. / wise in cutting their contract lists. In its 35th anniversary year, UA 

' of America re-elected W. R. Yar- Swerdlin Is Circle Pres, Not so much because most contract will distribute the product of such 

It is our belief, that this is only nell as president, along with thrfee Dr. Nathan Swerdlin, editor of players were bad investments but craftsmen as Joseph Mankiewicz, 
the beginning, since CinemaScope veepees, Joseph j. Rathert, John the- Jewish Day-Journal, has been also because many talented young John Huston, Anatole Litvak, 
Is in its infancy and the engineers Glavin and Paul Fralic, who will elected president of the Foreign people failed to receive the oppor- Stanley Kramer Robert Rossen 

and technicians are working con- also double as treasurer. Press Film Critics’ Circle. This is tunities they actually deserved, and Victor Savill’e. And stars such 

Btantly to improve the medium in Owing to the recent resignation a N. Y. association which annually These probably will gain success as Bogart Burt Lancaster, Gary 

order to enable our production or- of O. W. Murray, veepee and geri- bestows pic awards. in the theatre, TV and other allied Cooper, Jennifer Jones, Gregory 

ganization under the guidance of eral manager, Yarnell and Rathert Dr. Armando Romano, editor of fields and eventually gain screen peck Ginger Rogers and! Errol 
Darryl Zanuck to create bigger, will assume added duties. Yarnell II Progresso, was named v.p. and stardom, thus alleviating the stu- Flynn who appear in UA releases 

better and more exciting entertain- announced that the company’s 1954 Rebecca Issachar of the National dios f ** om the costly burden of f or 1954 similarly appreciate th« 

ment than has heretofore been pos- pOliey will be the same as last Greek Herald was reelected as training them. wider opportunities of ihdepen- 

. . es year’s. treasurer. Today's trend seems to poini to- dent films. 

^ norine (iihrol, ^A/vtnnfo/1 nrfi-n o jjutcuudl dllU LI. VV . U1U1UI1 1UUUUCU A. 

CCA Re-Electe Yarnell ^ -tSSS^SU, 

eu ny me pumics response to Hollywood, 

ir first two CinemaScope pic- Board of directors of Color Corp. 
r ® s ; _ of America re-elected W. R. Yar- 

It is our belief, that this is only nell as president, along with thrfee 

- sible : 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 



(Presn Paramount international) 

‘Big’ Fix Vs. Mass 

It is probably true that some pic- 
tures' got exported that really 
shouldn't, but in order to stop 
these pictures, we would have to 
set up ^ in.ech— 
a n i s m that 
would boom- 
erang tar be- 

yohd any con- 
struct-ve value 
that it might 

have. During 

tlie course of 

the year, a. 

. greai ' m a ny . 

'.. pictures ..leave 
our s h-q.r e s 
that do our George Weitncr 

e o u n try a 

great deal of good. They are pic, 
tures that bring us prestige, that 
shovv in a kindly light the Ameri- 
can way of life, our homes, our 

schoo's ahd oiir iristftutioris. 

Any good propagandist will tell 
you that if an output is consist- 
ently good, without contrast, it 
becomes saccharine and loses its 

propaganda, value. A heal thy soa- 
soning of rough-and-tumble stuff 
docs not detract from the type of 
picture aforementioned but en- 
hances and highlights them. 

I am sure that it is known, to 
you that occasionally a picture goes 
out that is very self-critical of our 
nation or something within it and 
niav be said to shoiv us in a less 
than good light. Even these pic^ 
tures have their value, because 
they prove that we stiil have free- 
dom to criticize ourselves, which 
is quite in contrast to the film ef- 
forts wiih the Red Star trademark. 

Yes, I suppose there should be 
some selectivity in exports but I 
think that the individual com- 
panies should be entrusted with 
this; perhaps after - some indoc- 
trination in the problems involved. 

The competition of local produc- 
tion abroad is gradually increasing, 
although we in our company have 
not fpit this. Italian pictures are 
increasing, their grosses in Italy, 
French pictures in. France, and so 
on amongst the major producing 
countries of the world. Therefore, 
while Paramount in particular is 
not feeling this, it must be coming 
out of our industry hides some- 
where. Most of these centres, of 
production, particularly in conti- 
nental Europe and Asia, have Suf- 
fered greatly because of the War. 
It should not be surprising to us 
that, they are now' catching up. I 
believe that this is salutary, as it 
presents a greater challenge to 
Hollywood. We have never been 
a nation to be afraid of competi- 
tion. and I think we can rightly 
say to the foreign countries “More 
power to you.” 

MPEA is not only doing a good 
job. It is doing a great job. Elected 
by the Motion Picture Association 
-to-be industry-chairman in the en- 
deavor to assist Eric Johnston in 
the various industry agreements 
that were negotiated this year, I 
am happy to take this opportunity 
to pay tribute to Mr.. Johnston’s 
prestige, astuteness and leadership 
?nd to the efficiency of his organ- 
ization. In all my years of experi- 
ence of the /notion picture busi- 
ness, which are now' more than 30, 

I have never collaborated with a 
harder worker and a harder hitter 
or a more intelligent negotiator. 

j__ festivals OK — But Too - Many | 

The American industry in my 
opinion should definitely partici- 
pate in foreign film festivals. We 
cannot disregard the fact that our 
ndustry is the world’s largest pro- 
ducer ol films and for us to with- 
oid ourselves from participation 
n festivals could be mistaken for 
. !. . ev yd might be in essence a form 
industry snobbishness- We must 
c very careful ilot to in actuality 

- or place ourselves in a position 
oL;?,' 18 acc used of this fault. We 
.! P‘* r M c iP a te seriously and 
i J ? rl< ' m tly as befits a great indus- 
11 J ln a world market 

v-P? Rreat Problem of film festi- 
vals, however, is their multiplicity. 

thft S n ? n ! 0St impossible because of 
to ^^t .number of these festivals 
theiS aitl i C u )ate P r °perly in. all of 
sliii * l 1 ^aye Tong advocated and 
GaiJ? advocate an ‘’Olympic 
bv -i S sys f j 111 festivals, where- 

voulH a" 01 d . festiv al committee 
t iv ',' 1 designate two or three fes- 

ainontrct 3 m year » rotating . them 
;:;s the countries that have 
c in' lw n ln dustries so that there 
h,.? Very fow festivals each 
’ l t Sreat ones, in. which the 

world motion picture industry 
could participate so brilliantly tint 
the publicity resulting therefroni 

would increase the public interest 
in motion pictures. 

In spite of the unusual difficul- 
ties that beset the distributors of 
| American . films abroad, such as 
quotas, licenses, tariffs, exchange 
restrictions, unusual taxes and 
other artificial barriers, the desire 
of foreign publics to see the out- 
put of Hollywood will continue as 
long as Hollywood makes fine pic- 
tures and as long as this continues 
our business Will be good in spite 
of the trade barriers that have 
been set up. 

Continued from pace 8 

pictures develop, the in-between ! 
film may find itself in a tortuous * 

(position. ' 

j It must be accepted that an ex- 
] hibitor would, prefer a picture of 

magnitude, still all can’t fall in ...... Hollywood, 

that bracket. However, as the trend Predictions that 1953 Would see 
moves in the direction of the im^ business in the motion picture in- 
porlarit category, perhaps there dustry fall to a new low' did not 
will be fewer pictures. Which chine-' to pass, it is clearly appar- 

K “ s — " i ent :9i th - G - 

close of tlie 
year. Many 
things served 
to" alleviate 
con d i 1 1 o ns 
which origi- 
nal ly. pointed 
to a bad 1953 


WB’s 16 in ’54 

Continued from page 8 

lirday Evening Post story. David 
Weisbarl produced for WB, with 
David Butler directing. 

Before the. CinemaScope cam- 
eras we now have “A Star is. B.orn’’ 
(Judy Garland, James Mason, Jack 
Carson, and Charles Bickford); 
“The High and the Mighty” (John 
Wayne); "Lucky Me” (Doris Day, 
Robert Cummings and Phil Sil- 
vers); “The Talisman” (Virginia 
Mayo, George Sanders, Rex Har- 
rison); “Ring of Fear” (Clyde Beat- 
ty circus, Mickey Spillane, Pat 

brings into tlie spotlight the sub- 
ject of double features. Big pic- 
tures may take care of this in their 
own way. At least, in tire first run 
situations anyway; The w'idcscrceh, 
the new. mediums, are added in- 
ducements and may turn the 
exhibitor away f Com the double bill 
idea.', . 

I imagine all pictures will . be 
shot for widescreen. That doesn’t 
! pose a problem. How ever, selection. 

; of the medium is something else. 

1 1 believe the subject matter must 
1 fit ; the mediuni. If it adds to the 
artistic value then perhaps Cinema- 
Scope is the answer, or Cinerama, 
or Todd- AO or 3-D, but this cannot 
be determined before yoii have a 
complete .shooting script. 

My own production plans call for 
two pictures, the “Maurice Che- 
valier Story” with Danny . Kaye, 
the: other “Dawn in the Sky;” with. 
Jimmy Stew'art. At this time I 
wouldn’t, I couldn’t say just how 
we’ll shoot either or both. 

More CinemaScopers 

to go ahead with a full knowledge 
of what dimension Is practical 
from both production and theatre 

Realistically speaking, both the 
exhibitor and producer must face 
the ever-increasing encroachment 
of television, this from a stand- 
point of multiple increase of tele- 
vision in key cities and alsp the 
ever-expanding of new' telestations 
in sub-key .cities and bur smaller 
communities. The growth of tele- 

T n r* 1 n t\ A ■ vision stations and home receivers 
1 is on the increase and “around and 

amortg these i • . ^ , .. , 

were the nom- ! around lt 8° es and where it stops 

ber of great 

Herb Yates 

pictures which 

ed through the medium of wide- 
screen, rn.d the flurry of 3-D films 
which, proved to be a temporary 
hypodermic for sated appetites 
seeking diverting entertainment. 
Then came CinemaScope which ; 
brought phenomenal grosses in ; 

nobody knows.” 

I believe that the large m a jo city 
were exploit- ! of motion picture exhibitors should 
'• ' follow the example of other lead- 

ing theatremen in America who 
have acquired TV station licenses. 
In their territories. As I’ve said 
before, television, is show business 
and show business belongs to the 
motion picture industry. Why let 
television go to outsiders? J be- 

. sjons, Republic has not made a 
More and more stress will be ! 3-D or CinemaScope picture. We 
place(l on ^storj',. At least, that’s my | have stuck to the conventional 

type picture, geared to w'idescreen 
because We believe . this is- the 

the limited . number of theatres 
which were able to install the new lieve from this point on, alert ex- 
equipment. | hibitprs will prevent this from 

In respect to the new- dimen- 1 happening in the future. 

In preparation and being readied 
to follow in CinemaScope we have. 
12 equally important productions; 
“Battle Cry,” to be produced by 
Henry Blanke and directed by 
Raoul Walsh; “East of Eden,” 
based on John Steinbeck's current 
bestseller, produced and directed 
by Elia Kazan; “Mr. Roberts.” one 
of Broadway’s all-time hits, a i 
Joshua Logan-Leland Hayw'ard 
production based on the play by 
Thomas Heggen and Joshua Logan; 
“Helen of Troy,” to be directed by 
Robert Wise and made in Rome; 
“Giant.” George Stevens’ produc- 
tion of Edna Ferber’s bestseller, . 
to be directed and produced by 
Stevens in association W'ith' Henry.- 
Ginsberg; “Land of the Pharaohs,” 
to be produced and directed by i 
Howard Hawks' from the story be- , 
ing developed as a novel arid 
screenplay by Nobel Prize wdriner 
William Faulkner; “The Silver 
Chalice,” Thomas B. Costain’s 
novel, which has been high on the 
best seller lists throughout the na- 
tion ; for : many months, to be pro- 
duced and directed by Victor 
Saville; “Daniel and . the V. oinan 
of Babylon’’; “Sea Chase,” starring 
John Wayne; “The. Miracle.” from 
the famed Max Reinhardt produc- 
tion; “Moby Dick,” the Herman 
Melville sea classic to star Gregory 
Peck -arid- be produced-and directed-) 
by John Huston; “Trilby,” by Ger- 
ald; DuMauricr, to star Kathryn 

We know there is great enter- 
tainment appeal in 3-D pictures, 
properly made, with the right stars 
and the subjects proper to that 
medium. Our “House of Wax” and 
“Charge at Feather River” W'ere 
successes. As this is written good 
returns are pouring in for “Hon- 
do,” John Wayne’s first 3-D film. 
Alfred Hitchcock’s “Dial M . for 
Murder” starring Ray Milland,, 
Grace Kelly and Robert Cummings, 
and our soon-to-be released “Phan- 
tom of the Rue Morgue,” from 
Edgar Allen Poe’s classic thriller, 
starring Karl Malden, Claude 
Dauphin, Patricia Medina and 
Steve Forrest, will again prove the 
potency of the right 3-D attraction. 

it is my own conviction that the 
technical advances achieved dur- 
ing the past year arid the further 
improvements Which are being 
realized will mean a soundly pros- 
perous 1954 for the motion picture 
Industry. I know it will be a great 
year for the public; which Is 
destined to see pictures of a mag- 
nitude arid quality never before 

thinking.. You don’t do any star a 
favor by giving him a script' that 
doesn’t have strong story poten- 
tiality. Too much then is expected 
of him to pull a mediocre picture 
out of that class and make it a big 

Production Outlook 


1 think all studios in 1954 will 
produce approximately the same 
number of pictures in 'various 


soundest policy for Republic to dimensions as in '53, I don’t antie- 
purstie at the present time. I 'Pale any shrinkage in production. 

I think exhibitors ’ have much to What will happen in ’55 will be de- 
look forward to in bigger and bet- ■ pendent on public reaction lo-new 

f ter boxoffice pictures from all ! roper-deluxe pictures which the 

That s asking too much. When a i companies. This will result in . a 1 dustry is now trying to produce 
picture doesn’t live up to boxoffice substantially increased gross for . in quantity. If boxoffice reaction 
expectations, there are people in ; American theatres for the now' -is good in '55 a greater number, of 
the industry who are quick to jump year over 1953. I do believe that pictures will probably be made, 
to the conclusion that the star is ’54 will definitely settle the matter ; The . investment of Hollywood pro-' 
losing his boxoffice appeal. j of standardized screen dimensions nlueers Will be far greater in ’54 

All elements must be right. They j once and for all. This w ill enable than in ’53. 

better be! I both producer and exhibitor alike Most 7 of the marginal houses 

, have closed, and the great major- 
; ity of theatres now: in operation 
j are on a sound financial basis. If 
j (he fine pictures We are currently 
i making find favor with the public, 
_ - ! as w e anticipate, I look for the 

By JAMES R. GRAINGER most optimistic outlook we've had 

(President, RKO Pictures) ; since 1947 and a great resurgence 

As 1953 comes to an end, a pat- ' as Technicolor sprinkled our prod- °f production. ^ 

tern of things to come in 1954 is uct of a few years ago. ; , Co de Enforcemen t | 

clearly beginning to emerge. As j With the widening of Techni- ; i believe^ uiat the" Motion Pic- 

disastrous as revolution can be, it color laboratory facilities march- : lure Producers* Assn., set up by 

canriot be de- ^ along, I feel sure that very lew tlie industry to interpret the re- 

pictures will 'be made in black and actions of the public jind ciyic or- 
war comes" 4 ^ , ganizations all over the world, has 

progress and a j "hite during the coming years. ; dbne an excellent job. Thev have 
i 1954 will see fewer and better tried in every way to give the pro- 
pictures coming from our studios ; ducer the maximum latitude in 

ZKZaS. J^l in Hollywood. No longer will pro- making a picture, particularly if it 

I duccrs make a film just to.bemak- has a controversial theme. I see 

id-J ' ing a picture. When thev go to the no reason to adjust the Production 

nail or mot [ post thcV - n have a storv afid s(nrs Code. Once we start changing it, 

i ?h 5 and production values set up that we could be hit by an avalanche 
i^T offer the greatest b.o. potential, .of censorship, not only from; slates 

lessons leained . j h a ve the feeling that during but from towns and villages. A 

■Jimmy GrainBeY— ‘. r | ”^-7^ "rfie' ^ years" TO- COlUd majoi—nstu- Picture could-be cut so many t-ime-s- 
r „ tulUz ■ dios will hold product to from 15 it would look like shredded wheat, 

■ to 20 . maioi pioductions pci com- The industry certainly does 

need a research project, and I be- 
More and more, in talking, to lieve that we had already begun 

resultant busi- 
ness boom. We 
began to feel 

Rpbson’s Indie ’Walk’ 

Holly wood. 

Mark Robson, and; Hairy Lenait 
are setting up a new indie produc- 
tion unit to shoot “Walk With the 
Devii,” based on a novel by Elliott 

Story deals with Italy during 
World War II. It will be filmed in 
Rome with Robson producing and 

years will send picture business pany--perliap.s even less, 
soaring to a new' high. 1 ' 

One of the greatest lessons we picture-making executives, sales work on one when the chaos of 
learned during the past year 1 managers and exhibitors them- 3-D hit us. There is every reason 
wasn’t a. new' lesson. It was merely j selves. I find the imagined fear of to. expect this matter to he re- 
one that the industry had lost ( xv lessening and lessening. TV is sumed during 1954. A point not 
sight of in the mad rush of events, j taking its place in the entertain- mentioned so far, affecting the 
That is, great pictures always do nient firmament as naturally as . producers’ playing time, is the 
great business regardless of the did its predecessor, radio. The pat- fact that' . there- are going to be 
state of the union. I tem in this field is set. True, in more foreign pictures coming to 

And speaking of the state of the ^ the years ahead, TV could be the the United States than ever be- 
union. it is great. Today the mo- | distribution factor, or projection . fore. Reciprocity is necessary if 
tion picture industry, just as every j factor, for motion pictures but we re to do business with other 
other industry, has an opportunity ; before this could take place, years countries, but they are not. going 
to serve an additional 20,000,000 ' of untangling technical snarls, to let us have a unilateral policy, 
more customers than it did in ; building a market and a million- There is going to b? a demand 
the early 1940s when picture busi - 1 and-onc other problems would have next year by many governments 
ness was setting new records. Ap- 1 to be faced and solved. to get their pictures inlb our tliea- 

parcntly, many in the film business | u is niy opinion that it would trcs. and this will capse a very 
have completely overlooked the ! take 20 years to put multi-million serious situation, which 'must be 
fact that today the population of : dollar, first-run motion pictures faced by both • the American ex- 
the U.S. has grown to 160 riiillions | into the hoirie via TV. Granted tliat hibitor and producer, 
against its 140. millions in early .-war [the TV industry could solve tech- ' Glosed-circuit television for tlie- 
days. These additional 2d, 000,000 nical problems and place coin-TV atres and “pay-as-you-see” televi- 
customers alone are enough to keep ; set.s in every home in America in ! sion will riot be with us before the 
the theatres of the nation rolling, the next 10 years there is stil 1 the latter part of 1955 at [the earliest, 
it is Up to us to go out. and get 1 problem of public acceptance to a . There are too many problems in- 
them. Showmanship will do it and 1 degree w'here it could be niacle a Volvcd, including' .the" FCC. • inslal- 

good pictures will keep them com- paying proposition, Ration -of meters and. last but not 

* n *»* Regardless, though, any predie- . least, the proper product. I he- 

As the smoke clears during the tioh on .this subject is strictly lieve that the producer and exhihi- 
early months of 1954, I am posi- j looking into the old crystal ball, tor are not so much concerned 
tive that many of the disturbing! Numerical cuts in personnel, in 1 vith them right now as they are 
elements that kept us fogged up in the producing and sales organizar With the hundreds of television 
1953 will be cleared away. From i't-ions, will pace with production ; Stations scheduled to open during 
out of our over-abundance of ne\v \ cutbacks in pictures for- theatres, the next two years in small com- 
• developments will emerge one or ; ji follows that, there must be a munitics. Out of all this turmoil. 
t\vo new stable, accepted systems. ! certain amount of cutbacks in per- ' however, will come a permanent 
. It could well be thatwides'ereen, |sonncl all along: the line. This is : and much healthier situation. In. 

or GinemaScope could become simple business arithmetic '..arid • addition, there are goiiig to be 

standard With certain pictures 1 economics. In tightening up any hundreds of new driye-ins built m 
w'hich lend themselves to the mtv ! Organization, it follows that real" this country during 1954 and lJao, 
dium. T personally believe that 3-D i talent will survive Whether in the and drive-ins have proven to he 
will be used on certain films, just 1 sales or production field. 1 impervious to TV cmnpetitioii. 

Fmrty-eigktk , 'Anmwtmcy 

Wednesday, January 6 , 1954 









Jjjj|i p |'^! I|; 








"Come up 
and see my 

As our 30th Anniversary commences, we 
want to thank our exhibitor friends whose 
mutual confidence and cooperation has 
made it all possible. We’ve got countless 
medals, awards, statuettes. The annals of 
film business glow with the achievements 
of M-G-M attractions, M-G-M stars, M-G-M 
Showmanship. But our celebration is 



K \ 

w ^afer> ' 

your box-office! Let’s get the cash and let 
the credit go! W e invite theatre men to 
join with us in what will be one of the 
biggest promotions of its kind ever held in 
the industry, to launch a cavalcade of top 
entertainments, to stimulate y our business.- 


•••••• ’’’T?'- ■■ 'tfsigTr* 




I JUBlVfr I 

iMncday, J» n — *T *» 19s * 

Forty-eighth J'fittl'P&T Antticenary 



event of the Year; Get your slice 
to give your Box-office a LIFT 1 

It’s going to be the most publicized 
of the Birthday Cake. It’s an unparalleled opportunity 
Here is a partial list of available M^G-M attractions for 
accessories available FREE I 




(In Color Magnificent) • Robert Taylor, A va Gardner, Mel Ferrer 

"EASY TO LOVE” (Technicolor) 

Esther Williams, Van Johnson, Tony Martin 


"QUO VADIS” Greater In WIDE-SCREEN • (Technicolor) 
Robert Taylor, Deborah Kerr, Leo Genn 


"GIVE A GIRL A BREAK” (Technicolor) 

Marge and Gower Champion, Debbie Reynolds 



Red Skelton 



"SAADIA” (Technicolor) 

Cornel Wilde, Mel Ferrer, Rita Gam 




Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz 


Shelley Winters 

"ROSE MARIE” (Cinemascope) 

(In Color Glory) • Ann Blyth, Howard Keel, Fernando l amas 


"GYPSY COLT” (Ansco Color) 

Donna Corcoran, Ward Bond, Frances Dee, and Gypsy 


"RHAPSODY” (Technicolor) 

Elizabeth Taylor, Vittorio Gassman 


"FLAME AND THE FLESH” (Technicolor) 

Lana Turner, Pier Angeli 



MOGAMBO” (Technicolor) 

Gark Gable, Ava Gardner 


(Ansco Color ) • Richard Widmark, Karl Malden, 
EUioe Stewart 


Spencer Tracy, Jean. Simmons, Teresa Wright 

"KISS ME KATE” (Ansco Color) 

Kathryn Grayson, Howard Keel,. Ann Miller 


(Ansco Color) • William Holden, Eleanor Parker, 
John. Forsythe 


Red Skelton 

VALIANT” (Technicolor) 

Robert Taylor, Stewart Granger, Ann Blyth 

"TORCH SONG” (Technicolor) 

Joan Crawford, Michael Wilding 


Glenn Ford, Anne Verpon 



William Holden, June Allyson, Barbara Stanwyck, 
Fredric March, Walter Pidgeon, Shelley Winters, 
Paul Douglas, Louis Calhern 

"BETRAYED" (Color) 

Gark Gable, Lana Turner, Victor Mature 


Greer Garson, Robert Ryan 


Marlon Brando, James Mason, John Gielgud, 
Louis Calhern, Edmond O'Brien, Greer Garson, 
Deborah Kerr 


Stewart Granger, Elizabeth Taylor, Peter Ustinov 


Gene Kelly, Jeff Richards 


( Technicolor ) • Gene Kelly, and All-Star Cast 

Robert Taylor, Eleanor Parker 


(Ansco Color) • Van Johnson, Walter Pidgeon 

The Great 
Event That 
Ushers In 
M-G-M’s 30th 

And Many More BIG ONES Including The Industry's Greatest Line-up Of Short Subjects I 


"ROSE MARIE” (Color) 
Anil Blyth, Howard Keel, Fernando Lamas 

"BRIGADOON” (Ansco Color) 
Gene Kelly, Van Johnson, Cyd Charisse, 
Elaine Stewart 


(Amce Color) r : ■ r /• 

Jane Powell, Howard Keel, Jeff Richards 


(Ansco Color) 

Ann Blyth, Edmund Purdom, John Ericson, 
Louis Calhern, and the singing voice of 

M-G-M promts in Ci/iemaScope - "KNiqHTS OF THE ROUND TABLE”. (lnCck, Magn.firenc) - Uarrmg RcbntTaylor 
Ava Garden • Mil Ftntr • with Anm Crawford • StanUy Bakn • Scntn Fla, ^Talbot )ntt«^, JanSMiU t a«dmi 
Langtry • Based m Sir Ttmm Malory’i "U Merle D’ Arthur" • Dirnltd by Richard Ttorfi • FnitMdby Fandn S. Birman 



Forty-eighth ' P4BHETY Anniveriary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

The French Line 


3-D musical with hot possibilities 
from blue-nose controversy and 
ccnsorably costumed four-minute 
dance by Jane Russell. Without 
hotspot, only mild, talky tuner with 
mostly distaffer appeal. 


RKO iflpase of Edmund Grainger pro* 
duction. Slurs J«iic Russell; co-stars Gil- 
bert RoIandV Arthur ■ Ilunnicutt; features 
Mary McCarthy., Joyce MacKenzic. Paula 
Corday; Scott Elliott, Clulg Stevens. Di- 
• reeled 'hy l.loyd Bacon. Screenplay, Alary 
Loos, Richard Sale: based on a story by 
Matty Kemp, Isabel Dawn; camera (Tech- 
nicolor). Harry J, Wiltk editor. Robert 
Ford; mudeal supervision; C. Bakalelnl-' 
koff; imisui t rransed and conducted by 
Walter. Schorl'; dance numbers staged by 
Hilly D inieV; songs,. Jbsef Myrow. Ralph 
Blanc. Rooert. Wells. Previewed Dee. 29, 
.*53, Running time, 102 MINS. 

Mary C. rson 
Pierre ' 

••Waco” Mosby 
Annie Farrell •. . . 
Myrtle iJrov. n . . . . 
C’elcsie ..... 

P.lliJfcvnis ...... 

Phil 'IV irl on 
Kalhcr'iio 1 lodges 
Francois . . . . . 

First. Male. 

Cenr„o Codecs .. 
Donna Adams .... 

Kitty Lee 

... .lane Russell 

. Gilbert. Roland 

Arthur llunnieuit. 
. . ; Slary McCarty 
. Joyce MaclCeiuie 

Paula Corday 

Scott Elliott 

Craig Stevens 

.... Laura. Elliot 
. . ... Steven Geray 
. John Weiigrar 
Michael Si. 'Angel 
Barbara Dnrrow 
, Barbara Dobbins 

and direction. Boland's suave way 
with the ladies helps his character 
of the French lover' who pursues 
oil-rich Miss Russell for herself, 
not her millions. Arthur Hunnicutt 
tells tall tales as Miss Russell’s oil 
partner and guardian. Among the 
lookers assembled to add bosom 
emphasis are Joyce MacKenzie, 
Paula Corday, Laura Elliott and 
others who shape up correctly. 
Scott Elliott, Craig Stevens, 
Michael St. Angel ore among the 
male casters having little to do. 

Edmund Grainger’s; production 
guidance is excellent in mustering 
outstanding physical attractions for 
the show. His choice of cleffers 
Myrow, Blanc and Wells for the 
tunes was good, too. However, the 
listenahle songs are rather poorly 
sung by the principals. Harry J. 
Wild’s 3-D color lensing is top- 
notch. as are the background music 
arrangements by Walter Scharf. 


The (ilenn Miller Slorv 


T h c censorship controversy 
stirred up over “The French Line” 
by its lark of a Production Code 
seal gives the RKO release a na- 
tural edge for ballylioo and ticket 
sale possibilities; Actually, except 
for a four-minute. censorably cos- 
tumed dance by Jane Russell, it is 
a rather mi Id, gabby, fashion 
parade in 3-D that Will appeal 
mostly to distaffers. Exhibs willing 
to join Howard Hughes in side- ; 
stepping the industry’s code reg- 
ulations Would seem to be in line 
for a fancy b.o. buck — as long as 
the controversy continues to be 
fanned and the aforementioned 
four-minute scene stays in., 

Russell is well equipped by 
nature to fulfill the demands. of the 
costuming by Michael Woulfe and 
Howard Greer, and on that Count, 
when seen through the polaroids, 
eyes will pop as she shakes and 
quakes to •“Looking for Trouble.” 
The outfit she wears has been vari- 
ously described ; as a bikini affair, 
but beach bikinis rarely have such 
an inquiring camera thrusting, in- 
quisitive lenses forward at such 
strategic angles. The number gives 
every male a front box seat for a 
burlev show, and they will enjoy 
it if they haye stayed through the 
93-minute talkfest that preceeds it. 

This concern with the mammary 
is notable through the film’s 102 
miriiites in the casting of well-chos- 
en femmes and in their costuming, 
but not to any cerisorable extreme 
except in the “Trouble” unmber. 
Matching, maybe even surpassing. 
Miss Russell for size- is Mary Mc- 
Carty. who plays the star s ‘chum 
in the plot, joins her on singing 
“The Gal From Texas.” a lightly 
costumed production number, and 
solos “By Madame Firelle.” a fash- 
ion display of Michael Woulfe 
gowns that provides something for 
the distaff ticket-buyers to pop 
their eyes at. It’s unfortunate, 
however, that Miss McCarthy, the 
brily true musical comedy singer in 
the cast, is used so sparingly. 

Outside of these various treats 
for' the eyes In costuming. Techni- 
color tints and interesting settings, 
the picture is not strong on what 
generally passes for b;o, entertain- 
ment. The plot is the long-worked 
one about a rich girl' Who wants to 
be loved for herself and goes in- 
cognito as a working frail to find 
the right man. It's an okay basis 
for a musical if ingenuously han- 
dled. but there is little of the imag- 
inative displayed in Lloyd Bacon's 
dweetion or in the screenplay by 
Mary Loos and Richard Sale. Once 
in a while a snappy quip breaks 
•through the long passages of ver- 
biage that strain too hard to be 
smart talk. And in line with the 
f'hn’s principal concern, these 
snappy auips are bosom-conscious, 
even to the point of having Miss 
Rowell called “Chesty.” 

'Hie score has nine- tunes. The 
lOih song v. as the title number but 
it has been clipped. Miss Russell 
starts the song session on the num- 
bers by Joseph M.vrow, Ralph 
Blaine and Robert Wells by singing 
“Well, I’ll Be Switched” while talc- 
ing a hath. Later in the footage she 
docs “What Is This That I Feel?” 
while intoxicated on Black Velvets, 
and then joins Miss McCarthy- -on 
“Texas” before warming up to the 
hot finale “Trouble.” 

Gilbert Roland, who plays a 
French lover with verve, has “With 
a Kiss.” done. naturally, to a .room- 
of girls; “Comment Allcs Vous,” 
a ’es'-on in gopd neighborliness, 
and “Wait 'Til. You See Pains.” The 
ninth tune is “Poor Andre.” serv- 
ing as a production dance for Billy 
Daniel, who staged all of the terp 

Miss Russell is an eye-pleaser, 
and she can be a good musical 
comedy actress (“Gentlemen Pre- 
fer Blondes”) when given material 

Sentiment and swing keynot- 
ing appealing but lengthy bi- 
opic. Janies SieWart,. June Al- 
ly son and hearty boxoffice. 

Hollywood, Jan. 5. 

Universal release of Aaron Rosenberg 
production. Stars James Stewart. June 
Ally. son: lea lures Charles Drake. George 
Tobiar. Ileury Morgan; guest, stars, Fran- 
ces Lamfdrd. Louis Armstrong, Gene 
Krupa. Ben Pollack. - the '. Archie Savage 
Dancers, the Modernaires. Directed by 
Anthony Mann. Written by. Valentine 
Davies, O.-ear Brodney; camera (Techni- 
color), William Daniels; editor. Russell 
Sehrtcn'tarth; -dance director, Ken .- Wil- 
liams: inusical direction. Joseph Gershen- 
son; . musical adaptation, Henry Mancinl; 
technical 'consultant.' Chummy MacGregor. 
Previewed Dec. 10, '53. Running time, 

Glenn Miller . 
Helen Miller . 

Don lia.vnes . . 

Si S-luibinan 
Chummy MaeCreg 

Herse’f . . 

Hlmsc’f . .-. 
Iliru.?eff ......... 


Them.-' elves . . The 
Polly Haynes 

Mr, MiUer 

Mrs. Miller 
General Arnold . . 
Mr, Krant/ 

Joe Becker ..... 

Mr. Burger ...... 

Mrs* Burger 

. ... James Stewart 

June Ally son 

.... Charles Drake 
.... George Tobias 
or . . • IIcpry Morgan 

.... Frances Langford 

Louis Armstrong 

......... Gene Krupa 

... Ben Pollack 
Archie Savage Dancers 
...... The Modernatres 

... Marion Ross 

Irving Bacon 

. . . Kathleen Lockhart 

Barton. MacLane 

.......... Sie Raman 

Phil Garris 

....... . James Bell 

Katherine Warren 

Sentiment and swing feature this 
biopie treatment on the life of the 
late Glenn Miller, and in it Uni- 
versal has a boxoffice winner. 
James Stewart and June Allyson is 
strong marquee combination sd 
their presence with the Miller 
music and the exploitation push 
U will give, means hearty ticket 
sales in the keys and elsewhere. 

The Miller music, heard in some 
20 tunes throughout the prpduc- 
tion. is still driving, rhythmic swing 
at its best: It will be enjoyed; 
both nostalgically and for its im- 
pact: in comparison With present- 
day style. Paradoxically, although 
U is tied tight to Decca, the film 
is getting an advance promotional 
assist from RCA Victor, which has 
been pushing a plush, fancy-priced 
Miller album. DeCca is issuing the 
sound track, set. 

The Aaron Rosenberg supervi- 
sion makes excellent use of the 
music to counterpoint a tenderly 
projected love story, feelingly 
played , by. Stewart and. Miss Ally- 
son. The two stars, who clicked 
previously as a niari-wifj team in 
“The Stratton Story,” have an af- 
finity for this type of thing. Stew- 
art’s acting mannerisms are less in 
evidence in this than in his usual 
film roles. Both players have the 
advantage of sympathetic direction 
from Anthony Mann, who gives the 
subject understanding guidance, 
and a screen story by Valentine 
Davies and Oscar Brodney that is 
an expert blend of incidents in the 
Miller band career with behind- 
thc-baton personal highlights. 

With all of its many praise- 
worthy points, the film has its 
flaws, too. The principal complaint 
heard voiced at the. special, press 
premiere staged by U was agaiiist 
the picture’s length, which is a 
long one hour. and 53 minutes. This 
running time, results, from cram- 
ming too much into the. show and 
from dwelling too long on some 
sections that could have been 
speeded up: by a montage treat- 
ment. Also commented, on by press 
proem guests, was the odd absence 
of Tex Benekc., who gained band 
fame with Miller and led the out- 
fit for several years after the mae- 
riro’s death. There is no hint of 
Bcneke in the film. 

The first 70 minutes of the pic- 
lure Is given over to Miller’s search 
for a sound in music arrangement 
(hat would be his trademark and 
live after him. Blended with this 
search is his absentee courtship of 
Helen Burger, whom he had de- 
cided was the girl for. him while a 
student at the University of Col.o- 
rado. Time of the story start is 
1920, when Miller joined the Beil 
Pollack outfit at Venice, .Calif, It 
then follows him cross-country to 
New York, his marriage and 
through, .abortive.- attempts' to found 

his own band. The jiew sound 
comes at Si Shribman’s State Ball- 
room in Boston, when the trumpet 
lead accidentally splits his lip . at 
rehearsal and "Moonlight Sere- 
nade” is played with a clarinet 

Remaining 45 minutes covers the 
rocketing Miller fame, his enlist- 
ment when World War II starts 
and the service band’s playing for; 
overseas troups. : The finale is a 
real tear-jerker that will have 
every femme, and not a few males; 
unabashedly drying eyed as the 
maestro’s family listens in at home 
to a special , Christmas Day broad- 
cast to the States from Paris, 10 
days after Miller disappeared on a 
flight from London to Paris. 

Highlighting the romantic swing 
phases of the presentation are 
such songs identified with Miller 
as “Serenade,” “String of Pearly,” 
"St. Louis Blues March,” "In the 
Mood,” "Little Brown Jug/’ 
"Pennsylvania 6-5000,” "Tuxedo 
Junction,” "American .Patrol,” 
"Chattanooga Choo Choo/’ "I 
Know Why,” "At Last” and "Na- 
tional Emblem March.” The only 
new r tune in the film is the "Love 
Theme,” composed by Henry Man- 
cini; It is heard at various times 

One of the big musical moments 
in the footage has nothing to do 
with the Miller music, If is a red- 
hot jam session that has Louis 
Armstrong, Gene. Krupa; Trummy 
Young, Babe Austin, Cozy Cole; 
Marty Napoleon, Barney Bigard 
and Arvell Shaw socking "Basin 
Street Blues.” Sequence is dated 
1928 and laid in Harlem’s Connie’s 
Inn; Enriching the sound of the 
sequence is the Technicolor lens- 
ing by William Daniels. JHis pho- 
tography is noteworthy in alt of 
the footage. 

To match the topflight perfor- 
mances of Stewart, and /Miss Ally- 
son, the. picture lias some strong 
thesping by featured and support- 
ing players, as well as guest star 
appearances. Henry Morgan stands 
out as Chummy MacGregor, Mil- 
ler’s 88’er. Charles Drake is good 
as Don Haynes, . the band’s man- 
ager, as are James Bell and Kath- 
erine Warren, and Irving Bacon 
and Kathleen Lockhart, doing the 
respective parents of Miss Burger 
and Miller, George Tozias as 
Shribman; Barton MacLane as 
Gen. Hap Arnold, and the players 
impersonating band members,; 

Playing themselves are Pollack, 
Armstrong, Krupa, Babe Russin, 
the only members of the original 
Miller band to appear personally, 
Frances Langford and the Modern- 
aires. The latter two are spot-, 
lighted in a reenactment of an 
overseas service show. 

Backing the unusually strong 
human elements, as well as the 
music, are topnotch technical as- 
sists from Daniels’ lensing, Joseph. 
Gershenson’s musical direction and 
the ' musical, adaptation by Henry 
Manicini, on through the. art direc- 
tion, settings, costumes and edit- 
ing. Serving as technical con- 
sultant was Chummy MacGregor. 


The Long, Long Trailer 


TV's "I Love Lucy” team 
romps through a gay. comedy. 
Good for plenty of laughs and 
an exploitation natural. 

Metro release of I'amlro S, Berman 
production.. Stars Lucille Ball, Desi 
Arnaz; features Marjorie Main, Keenan 
Wynn. Gladys Hurlburt, ' Moroni Olsen, 
Bert freed, Madge Blake, Walter Bald- 
win, ^Oliver Blake, Perry Sheehan. Di- 
rected by Vincente Minnelli. Screenplay. 
Albert Hackett. Frances Goodrich; based 
on Clinton Tw.iss novel; camera (Ansco 
color!, Robert Surtees; editor. Ferris 
Webster; music. Adolph Deutsch. Pre- 
viewed^ Dee. 31, '53, in N.Y. Running 
tune, 94 MINS. 

£acy Collini . Lucille Ball 

Nicholas Collim Desi Arnaz 

Mrs. Hittaway Marjorie Main 

Policeman. Keenan Wynn 

Mrs. Bolton Gladys Hurlbut 

Mr. Tewdtt Moroni Olsen 

... Bert Freed 

Aunt Anastacla Madge Blake 

Uncle Edgar Walter Baldwin 

Mr . Judloy ; Oliver Make 

Bridesmaid perry Sheehan 

For those itching to explore the 
wideopen Spaces in a trailer, as 
well as those who’ve been hoping 
Fpr . Lucille Ball and\ Desi Arnaz, 
TV’s toprated "I Love Lucy” team, 
to be transported to a larger screen] 
Metro has concocted this merry 
little ditty that ought to go over 
big at the b.o. It’s a lighthearted, 
genuinely funny comedy that 
lapses into slapstick at the drop 
of , a hat and shows both stars to 
best advantage. 

^In a way, "The Long, Long 
Trailer” is an apt title. The trailer 
is one of the stars of the picture, 
and it’s well cast at that. At the 
same time, and perhaps inevitably 
so, the film- provides ohe continu- 
ous plug for the shiny house-on- 
wheels which Miss Ball and Arnaz 
alternately use as a prop and a set. 

Wliatever exhibs iny have to say 
about TV as edmpetition ; in this 
case it’s certainly working to their 

Advantage. There are few places in 
the country where the Ball-Arnaz 
combination isn’t known, and the 
picture’s theme will intrigue the 
audience as to its comedy potential. 
Nor will they be disappointed. 

Not a trick has been missed in 
squeezing the laughs from every 
conceivable situation. In fact, the 
picture, takes the couple from the 
moment they see the trailer they 
Want — it costs them about five 
times as much as they intended to 
spend — through a series of ad- 
ventures and misadventures to the 
point where Miss Ball is ready to 
sell, their "house” and leave Arnaz 
in the process. 

Like the "I Love Lucy” TV show, 
"The; Long/ Long Trailer” strings 
together situation comedy without 
a letup; barely giving the audience 
a chance to catch its breath. After 
a somewhat . slow start, the team 
really hits its pace. Some of their 
antics involving the trailer are 

/Both Miss Ball and Arnaz deliver 
sock performances. Their timing is 
perfect and the. dialog provided by 
Albert Hackett and Frances Good- 
rich is clever. Miss Ball occasional- 
ly gives in to the temptation of be- 
ing overly cuto but, judging again 
by TV/ this shouldn’t bother the 
audience. Arnaz has a sure touch 
and provides a perfect balance to 
his Wife’s antics. His brief delivery 
of ^‘Breezin’ Alo ng with the Breeze 

coniedy niimber/wlth a Latin touch, 
is pleasing and well integrated. 

Rest of the cast easily gets into 
the spirit of the things Keenan 
.Wynn has an all-too-brief part as a 
policeman and Marjorie Main gets 
laughs as the eager-beaver trailer- 
ite. Vincente Minnelli’s direction 
accentuates the nonsensical aspect 
of the • stoiyr^Mbe-same-4Hne r kft 
wisely : lets the . camera roam 
through Yosemite National Park 
for some pretty exciting views, 

Ansco . color is good in the. out- 
door settings but doesn't give true 
reproduction in the fleshtones and 
in some of the interior shots. 
Pandro . S. Berman endowed the 
film with his usual production 
values. Music by Adolf Deutsch 
provides a- good background and 
Robert Surtees’ camera handling 
has real merit. / Hift. 

Border ' River 


Gener Ally-marketable escapist 
fare. Well-made actioner, star- 
ring Joel McCrea and Yvonne 
De Carlo, has good b.o. out- 

Universal-International release of Al- 
oert J.. Cohen production. Stars Joel 
McCrea and Yvonne. De Carlo. Directed 
by George Sherman. Screenplay, William 
Saokheltn. and Louis Stevens from a story 
by Stevens; camera. (Technicolor), Irvine 
Glassberg; editor, Frank Gross. . Pre- 
vlewed in N Y„ Dec. 30/ '52. Running 
time, 10 MINS. . • 

Clete Mattson 
Carmelita Carias ... 

General Calleja 


Annina . . . . . ; 

Captain'' Vargas .... 
Baron Von Hollden 

Sanchez -■.... .; 

Fletcher / 


Cfow r e \ 

Lopez ‘ 

....... Joel McCrea 

. . Yvonne De Carlo 
..Pedro Armendariz 
. . . . Howard Petrie 

.... . ErikaNordin 

. . Alfonso Bedoya 

Ivan Triesault 

...•• George Lewis 
. . . . George Wallace 
.... . Lane Chandler 
. . . Charles Horvath 
. ... Nacho Galindo 

This is generally - marketable, 
staple escapist fare, handsomely 
photographed in Technicolor and 
mounted with the proper action 
ingredients. Universal is an ac- 
knowledged master in turning out 
this type of picture, and "Border 
River” is one of the company’s 
better efforts. As a result, satisfac- 
tory returns are to be anticipated. 

U’s cameras move south of the 
border to record an incident tied 
in with the U.S. Civil War. It in- 
volves the purchase of arms and 
ammunition for , the Confederacy. 
Joel McCrea, as a Confederate 
major on the purchasing mission, 
and Yvonne De Carlo, as a Mexi- 
can beauty, satisfactorily fulfill 
the demands of the William Sack- 
heim and . Louis ..Stevens /screen- 
play* Writers ' /have provided a 
number of interesting situations, 
well stacked . with the ‘ necessary 
fisticuffs and romance/ Director 
George Sherman carries out his 
assignment, with, precision and Al- 
bert J. Cohen's overall production 
supervision is a definite asset. 
This, isn’t the kind of picture that 
will make any "10 Hest” list, but 
its a throughiy professional job, 
loaded .with the values, product- 
hungry exhibs are clamoring for. 

With the South’s . plight growing 
mbre desperate at the closing 
stages of the Civil War, McCrea 
and a band of cohorts steal $2,000,- 
000 in gold bullion from a Union 
mint. McCrea crosses the Rip 
Grande and In the any thin g-goes- 
for-cash town of Zona Libre seeks 
to make a deal, for ammunition and 
supplies for the Rebel army. News 
of the loot in his possession travels 
fast, and he is accosted by. various 
nefarious characters bent on an- 

nexing the gold for their own use 
These include a renegade Mexican 
general, the general’s double- 
crossing German advisor, a couple 
of ordinary crooks,, and a. '.private 
eye in the employ of the union 

. Miss De Carlo is seen as the 
general’s girl friend and co-owner 
of the local cafe. McCrea’s ideal- 
ism restores her own sense of 
justice, which had given way to 
cynicism brought about by the 
death of heir father and brother 
in political skirmishes. Pedro 
Armendariz is effective as the 
cruel and sinister general and 
Ivan Triesault is fine in the rqi e 
of the smooth-talking double-deal, 
ing German/ Alfonso Bedova 
scores as one of the general’s aides 
although the part is a familiar one. 

Irving Glassberg’s camera w-ork 
is first-rate, capturing some 
lush scenic vieWs which is bound 
to receive some "oh” and "all” re- 
sponses from audiences. Holl, 

Femmes lle Pa ri n 

(Women --of Paris) 

^ Paris. 

Corona release .of Hocl\e prod ucl ion 
Sturs Miohel Simon. Directed by Jean 
Boyer. Screenplay, Alex Jolie, ltay Veil* 
tui’a', B.oyer; dialog, JeanMarsun;. camera, • 
Charles. Suln; editor, Robert Gioi'doni; 
music,. Paul Misraki. At Olympia, Baris. 
Running time, 90 MINS, 

■ . Charles-. TVIichel Simon 

t~h€H S e M e ............... Brigitte . Aiiber . 

Lucien . . ^ • Henri (.encs 

Inspector Bernard Lajarrige 

Wife Germaine Kcrjean 

Film uses the gimmick of a staid T 
astronomer turned loose in a lush 
nitery to work in a flock of acts, 
guest stars as well as unfold a sim- 
ple stbry of the professor at odds 
with nature Ih the raw in night- 
-life^- .~FHm.-.enierges-^-as_-plea.s;mt-- 
fai-e for the local trade with the 
Michel Simon name for. pull. For 
the U. S. this gives nothing: as a 
musical or as a straight pic because 
of its forced premise. It might do 
in special situations, the plethora 
of unclad loVelies providing an ex- 
ploitation peg. 

A famed astronomer discovers an 
exploding star in his telescope, and 
while trying to phone his col- 
leagues overhears e girl’s voice say- 
ing she will kill herself if her lover, 
doesn't show up at a nightclub that 
night. The kindly professor is up- . 
set and when a series of calls to the"'' 
club and police is of r.o avail, he 
goes himself to 4ry to save the un- 
known femme* He gets mixed uo 
in dope smuggling racket, a flock 
ot predatory nitery gals. This 
gives a means of unloading num- 
erous acts. It also brings in Pata- . 
chou for a neat song stint and lo- 
cal comedian, Robert Lamoureux. 
There are plenty of the bare 
breasts on view plus some comic 

Director Jean Boyer has given 
this the bread-and-butter treat- 
ment, lacking verve, and invention 
for the/ musical bits. 

Michel Simon does well by his 
professor role. Brigitte Auber is 
cute as the suicidal dame and 
Henri Genes gets laughs as the har- 
rassed club owner. Lensing and 
editing are standard as is Paul Mis-, 
raki’s music. 



Mexico City, Dec. 29. 

Distrlbuidora Mexicana de Belicul:i.s 
release of a Producclones Zaearias pro- 
duction, Stars Llbertad I.amaique and 
Pedvo Infante; features Irma 
and Arturo Soto Rangel. Directed by 
Miguel Zaearias. Screeilpluy, Miguel 
Zaearias and. Edmundo Baez: camera. 
Gabriel Figurcroa. Music. .Manuel Es* 
peron. At Cine Mexico, Mexico City. Run- 
ning time, 101 MINS. 

Co-starring of. two w'arblcrs. Lih- 
ertad Lamarque, Argentinian tango' 
singer, and Pedro Infante, pop 
song expounder, along with favor- 
ite Agiistin Lara, No. 1 romantic 
song writer, Was a smart produc- 
tion move. Despite a queer but en- 
grossing story, the gifted direction 
of Miguel Zaearias plus these fa- 
vorites make the pic one of the 
best Mexican films of 1953, Zaca- 
rias does well as producer, wi’iter 
and director; Same is true of In-, 
fante as an impractical trouper hot 
Self-made . pro entertainer and 
glassy aristocrat. Miss Lamarque 
increases her popularity as a singer 
and thespian. 

This tale about a tango singer, 
violently . Widowed to face a seem- 
ing deadend with a young son . wh o 
inherits the family yen for Iroiip- 
ing, is nicely uhfqlded. Then there 
is the other scion who inclines lo 

commerce with quick coin a ppsi* 
tive yen. The clashes of the trio 
in theatres and parlors lead into 
some of the best numbers of Agus- 
tiii Lara, particularly "El Farolito. 
known in the U. S., and "Vera 
Cruz.” Infante does very w ell \v h h 
the former while .Miss Lamarque 
sells the latter, in a. tropical, set- 
ting featuring dancing damsels, 

"Ansiedad” played three top lo* 
cal cinemas day-date; and was 
clicko with distaffers. Doug- 

Wedneeday* Janqyy 6 5 1954 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 



(Pres., Society of Independent M.P. Producers! 

ThP motion picture industry continues to be the greatest 
entertainment business the world hits ever fa*;™, , 

nWently there have been some interesting, perhaps im- 
fJL nt Pxneriments, innovations and developments that 
P orta ' are worth considering; such things as 

TV, 3-D and the various widescreen 
systems. .. 

TV is listed because more and more 
it is relying upon film. The novelty 
phase has Worn off;/ People will not 
spend their time before their sets un- 
less TV tells a good story, or brings 
a public event of exceptional interest 
3-D may be an important motion 
picture medium of the future, or it 
may fade away. About such things, 
no one can ever be certain. Momen- 
tarily, it is principally a novelty. The 
public enjoys novelty ; but it soon may 
tire of having things thrown at them, fall upon them, and 
reach out for them. 

The . widescreen systems, with various trade names, 
make possible new and, in some cases, vastly improved 
techniques. They offer a challenge to producers, actors, 
directors, and, most of all, to the technical staffs. 

All that is fine. These events indicate that movie- 
making is alive and alert, ready to experiment. 

Independent producers have been in the vanguard of 
those producers experimenting with the new systems and 
techniques. The independent producer by nature is ad- 
venturous and is always ready to try new ideas and new 

Ahother indication of aliveness is the foreign market for 
American films, It is estimated that about 40% of the 
gross now comes from foreign showings. In spite of 
various restrictions, incidental to the world’s financial and 
currency problems, people abroad like Hollywood motion 


(Of Anchin, Block & Anchiti, New York) 

Ellis Arnajl 

They like them so well, that it is evident that we have 
not done more than touch the fringes of this available 
market. There are a good many people strung out be- 
tween the Pampas" and British Columbia, from Oslo to 
Lisbon, from Capetown to Suez. They enjoy entertain- 
ment and they will go to see American motion pictures. 

Cognizant of the increasing attractiveness of the foreign 
market, the Society of Independent Motion Picture Pro- 
ducers has recently created the Independent Motion Pic- 
ture Export Assn, to more fully exploit the ; possibilities 
offered independent product abroad. 

No Embargo on Product 

There are foreign imports for the American market, of 
course. Not those fuzzy and murky ones that occupy the 
late hours on some TV stations, of course. There are good 
foreign pictures. These are not bad for American pro- 
ducers any more than good books by Britons or Frenchmen 
or South Americans are bad for American writers and 
publishers. There ought always to, he free trade in the 
field of ideas. Everybody benefits. 

3-D and the widescreen may be important, but for just 
one reason. They may offer to the motion pictures, new 
technical devices With which to go about their basic busi- 
ness. Both tastes and techniques change, in every division 
of the field of ideas. . In verse, it might be a trifle annoy- 
ing to authentic poets to be limited to the rhymed couplet; 
nor does every poet wish to write an ode, some preferring 
sonnets or what-have-you. The adaptation of material to 
the appropriate technique, or vice versa if you prefer it 
that way, is the problem of all art. 

The widescreen offers some possibilities for story-tell- 
ing that are not to. be found in the present, flat screen; 
it offers, quite probably, some restrictions, as well as some 
obvious technical complexities. But it is good for the 
industry, because it will be used for the purpose for which 
the motion picture exists. 

And that is to tell a story. 

Nothing else is really important. 

There have been successes, both artistically and at the 
boxoffice. that were marred by obvious crudities in pro- 
duction, by bad camera Work, by occasional inane perform* 
antes by the players, who mouthed their words instead 
01 speaking them trippingly from the tortgue. These 
pictures Avcre successful, not because of their defects, as 
an occasional critic appears to suppose in mistaking inept- 
ness for art,, but in spite of. those defects and because . 
they did the two things that every good picture must do. 
They told a good story and they were sincere. That means 
that they said something that the people who pay money 
1° go to motion picture theatres wanted to hear. 

Production sense. The technical work is perfect, almost 

always. The costumes and the sets reflect the careful, 
painstaking research. The casts are better than adequate; 
a - minimum of ca reless, slopp y performances. 

L Grea t er H orizons ’ | 

. ‘V 1 these things, the new developments may offer 

g cater opportunity, just as changes in physical arrange- 
ii^ nlS i ‘ nnd P r °PS have provided more opportunity from 
roc to time to the state. They will make it easier for 
good story-tellers to tell the story, 
tiifit • . /'^ be true of the motion picture industry whether 
nioie theatres in the country or fewer. There 
r , v * r » for a time at leasts because of elements 

honVi' ( i ( ' from theatre business itself. Many neighbor- 
] n „ a c ;. houses, for example, are no longer in profitable 
intn n° ns Transit and parking problems must be taken 
driv/* (0l,n *'- n dotermining sites for new theatres. The 
infancy S 316 ^^eir childhood, not too far removed from 

Ican^..! 1 d 2. es not ma tter whether the filmgoer is an Amer- 
renchman 0 r a Norwegian. It does not matter 
i the picture is oh TV, or in a first run house down- 


It will 


p!a ?;! n * a neighborhood house or a drive-in. 
hav' whether U is 3-D 

or widescreen. 

good ni^* aU . dlen ^ e ^ i s a good picture, and it will be a 
EvcVv; CL il re, f nirte Times out of ten, if it tells a good story, 
true and every exhibitor knows that to be 

every r,ni i scri Ptwriter knows it, as does every author in 
thousanH , as ® v eryone has known it for a good many 
While Tv,^? arS il* Novelty diverts, but only for a little 
few davv ill 11 is strictly topical pulls a crowd, for a 
J until the topic is replaced in thought and con- 

Once up on_a_time . a very long time a go, we we re mainly 
concerned about how to earn money. Today, in this age 
of fabulous tax rates, the big problem is how to hold on 
to it. In fact, the Treasury Department appears to have 

undertaken a crusade to change the 
Old adage “You Can’t Take It With 
You” to read “You Can’t Keep It With 

In line with the Treasury’s policy, 
recent tax legislation has added . two 
new statutory weapons to the Tax 
Commissioner’s .. already formidable 
arsenal. These legislative provisions 
were aimed’ at. removing film, produc- 
ers and authors from the privileged 
capital gain class. Under present law 
( collapsible corporation statute ) pro- 
ducers can no longer liquidate a cor- 
J. s. H. Weiner poration upon the completion of a 
picture and have the difference between the realizable 
value and cost of the film taxed at capital gain rates. 
Nor can literary products be marketed through a fruitful 
capital gains transaction since such works are now ex- 
cluded from the capital asset category. Undoubtedly* 
should Congressional sniping continue in the same direc- 
tion, capital gain benefits may become as extinct as our 
American Buffalo. 

Reinstatement of the Author 

Fortunately, however, despite their apparent effective- 
ness, it is .still possible to hurdle these , new capital gain 
barriers. For instance, the author’s plight may be relieved 
by taking an old-fashioned remedy labeled ‘.‘partnership.” 
The instructions for using this prescription are as follows: 

. Team up with a partner who would be helpful in the 
Writing of the book or manuscript, say, in the capacity of 
co-author, editor, illustrator and the like. Upon its com- 
pletion, arrange for the sale of partnership interests, aiid 
not of the manuscript itself :• 

Since the profit on the sale of a partnership interest is 
generally treated, as a : capital gain, the author’s earnings, 
in. effect, Would; be taxed as : such rather than as ordinary 
income. Incidentally, although the author may own the 
lion s share of the partnership, the profit on the sale is 
nevertheless deemed a capital gain. 

Naturally, in view of the complexities of the applicable 
tax law, the recommended venture should not be under- 
taken without first consulting your tax adviser. 

. Now to doctor (or nurse, if you prefer) our other 
harassed invalid, the film industry; First, however let’s 
delve into the, patient’s background. ’ 

Did you know that a profitable liquidation could have 
been saved from the collapsible corporation law merely by 
officially consenting to terminate your business under a 
specific Section of the Infernal Revenue Code? Sounds 
unbelievable, doesn’t it? Yet, it’s true, and here’s the 
reason why; 

The collapsible corporation provision Was designed to 
convert certain capital gains into ordinary income. Accord- 
ingly, its application was confined only to those transac- 
tions which would have otherwise (but for this statute) 
been treated as a capital gain. Now comes the gimmick. 
Congress, in order to free small and closely held corpora- 
tions from the yoke of the excess profits tax, passed a 
temporary statute which permitted tax-free liquidations 
under conditions which would normally have qualified a 
company as a collapsible corporation. Stockholders could, 
therefore, effect a nontaxable liquidation by officially 
electing to dissolve the business under the Special relief 
provision. Since no capital gain was involved, the* Tax 
Commissioner could not assault the tax-exempt liquidation 
by way of the collapsible corporation law. 

This gap in the Commissioner’s line of attack was origi- 
nally closed by the expiration of the temporary loophole 
section oh Dec. 31, 1952. The law, however, was recently 
amended to extend this section, but only through 1953. 
Therefore, it is still necessary to seek another avenue of 

Overseas Productions 

The industry itself has conveniently spotlighted the 
right direction by a marked trend of filming pictures 
abroad for consumption by television and the cinema. 
This pattern of overseas production was undoubtedly in- 
spired by expected tax benefits. Generally, such savings 
are reaped only by those individuals who spend the pre- . 
scribed 18 months abroad. But what about the companies 
— making the foreign films? If produced by a domestic 
-(-form cd-iii-t-he-UT-Sr-) no-ta-x a d va nt-age-Avou Id— 
result, since its foreign as well as domestic income would 
be taxable by the United States. On the other hand, if the 
producing company was organized in the country in which 
the picture was filmed, the only advantage gained would 
be the trading of U. S. Income Tax Brackets for the pos- 
sible lower rates prevailing in the foreign countries! 

Despite the cloudy outlook, however, a Shangri-La does 
exist for corporate producers, which, incidentally, is more 
accessible than its fictional namesake. Therefore, follow 
these simple directions and you’ll be On The Road to 

Form the foreign company in a country such as Liberia 
which does not tax corporate income derived from without 

versation by another. That which is nothing more than 
timely, subjects its producers to the painful discovery 
that time riot only must, but does, have a stop. 

That is why American producers, while introducing 
every technical improvement that offers possibilities, will 
stick fundamentally to the story line. They will use every 
skill at their command to tell the story well. But it has 
to be a good story. 

The good stories will make good motion pictures which 
Will bring people into theatres. They always have. 

There has never been a greater awareness of oppor- 
tunity on the part of the independent producers than there 
is today. Opportunity is unlimited. Not since the change 
over to sound have producers been given over so thor- 
oughly to self-examination and intelligent reappraisal. 
That means that the motion picture industry is “on the 
bail” and will continue to be the world’s greatest entertain- 
ment business. 

that country. Accordingly, no, taxes, would be payable to 
Liberia on films produced and sold outside of that re- 
public. However, profits stemming from the sales of such 
film within the United States would be taxable, but not in 
their entirety. According to a special formula prescribed 
by the Commissioner, only about 50%. of the profits earned 
from films produced without and sold within the U. S. by 
a foreign corporation would be taxable by the United 
. States. This tempting morsel should be enough to satiate 
most any appetite; However, bowing to human frailty, 
why be satisfied with less than the Whole? By arranging 
for the sale and transfer of title to take place out of the 
United States, the entire income might possibly elude the 
Tax Commissioner’s grasp. 

Now to take care of corporations which retain residual 
rights and only license the exhibition of film within 
specific areas, say, the U. S. Such an arrangement can 
never constitute a sale without the United States and 
hence would be taxable. This stumbling block may be 
overcome by organizing a distributing company in another 
foreign country possessing an income tax pattern similar 
to Liberia such as Panama.. The. Liberian, /corporation 
Would produce a picture, perhaps in France, and then sell 
it to the Panamanian company. The resultant profit would 
escape the Liberian tax since it was derived from without 
that country. Nor should it be taxable by the U. S. since 
the sale was between two foreign corporations without the 
United States. 

The Panamanian company can then license the exhibi- 
tion of the film within the U. S. The Panamanian corpo- 
ration^ would be allowed a reasonable margin of profit, as a 
distributor, which would be subject to U. S. tax. The bulk 
of the income, however ; will have been retained tax-free by 
the Liberian corporation. 

. Ultimately, the earnings. of the Liberian company can be 
distributed to its stockholders via a corporate liquidation 
taxable at capital gain; and not ordinary income rates. 

Incidentally, domestic film producers need not be down- 
cast at the tax windfall pictured for foreign productions. 
Some measure of relief can be obtained for U. S. producers 
by drinking out of the same bottle recommended for ailing 
authors, that is, the one labeled, ‘‘Partnership. ” In other 
words, capital gains treatment was denied to collapsible 
corporations but not to so-called “collapsible partner- 
ships/’ To be more specific, the picture should be filmed 
by a limited partnership (offers limited liability to non- 
active financing partners) instead of by a (Corporate pro- 
ducer. The subsequent sale of a partnership interest will 
achieve the. desired capital gain, result. By the .way, the 
proposed form of financing and tax saving, (limited part- 
nerships) can and has been used effectively in connection 
with theatrical productions. 

Obviously, my illustrations were 1 oversimplified for this 
article. In actual practice, however, skillful maneuvering 
would be required, to iron out the accompanying technical 

| Foreign Residence | 

The physical presence rule (18 months out of the U, S.) 
was recently amended so as to exempt only $20,000 of 
earnings from U. S. Income Taxes. Undoubtedly, there- 
fore, many more entertainers, abroad, will try to lean on 
the one-year foreign residence provision as a crutch for 
'exempting foreign income. This rule compels the tax- 
payer to prove his foreign residence, as contrasted to the 
exemption granted automatically under the 18 months' 
rule. However, reasonable visits to the U. S,, which are 
permissible under the residence provision, would interrupt 
the 18 months’ sequence required to satisfy the physical 
presence condition. 

Another point to remember is that the validity of your 
foreign residence is not dependent upon whether income 
taxes were paid to the foreign government. For instance, 
David E. Rose, managing director of Paramount’s sub-, 
sidiaries in the United Kingdom, was able to qualify 
under the residence rule during the years 1943 to 1946, 
although he paid no income taxes to Great Britain. By 
the way, this herculean feat of avoiding both British and 
U. S. income taxes was accomplished by H simple, maneu- 
ver. Mr. Rose’s employment Contract, drawn in the United 
States, provided for the deposit of his salary checks in a 
New York bank. No part of this salary was remitted to 
him in England! His living expenses were paid directly 
by one of the subsidiaries. Under this set . of facts no 
income tax was payable to Great Britain. And. as a for- 
eign resident, his earnings Were excluded from U. S. taxes. 

Accordingly, the necessity of seeking a tax haven under 
the shelter of forei^l residence, due to the amendment 
"of the 18 months’ rule, may yeT proveT(rbi f- a _ blc*ssing in 

Here’s one last bit of practical advice. Don’t embark 
upon a tax venture without first balancing the risks against 
the rewards. For example, in the case of our Liberian 
corporation, failure to file a U. S. Income Tax Return may 
invite either the 25% penalty for wilful neglect or the 
■5.0*1 o fraud penalty. In addition a deficiency assessment 
can carry an interest load of as much as 18% <6% a year 
for a maximum three-year period under the Statute of 

At first blush, the percentages appear , to. be most formid- 
able. Viewed’ from another angle, however, the illusion 
is soon dispelled. 

The courts have generally refused to impose, either 
of the above penalties where failure to file a return is 
based upon the advice of CPA’s or legal counsel. As for 
the interest expense, since it is tax deductible, the Gov- 
ernment shares this cost in an amount equal to the tax- 
payer’s top bracket. For instance, assuming the Liberian 
company is . subject to a 52 °/c tax rate, the corporation 
would bear only 48% of the 18*7*0 figure, or 8.64*70 for a 
three-year period. The average interest cost /per year 
would then be 2,88*7 £. Let’s not forget, however, that 
the corporation has had the use of the money in the period 
it did not pay any tax, Surely, this benefit should be 
worth at least 2.88% per year. Accordingly, the actual 
interest cost Would be negligible, if not nil. . 

Apparently, therefore, provided the tax plan is based 
upon competent professional advice the taxpayer would 
have everything to gain and nothing to lose. 

Incidentally, as if you didn't already know, the moral 
of this story is “It Pays To Be Taxwise Than Otherwise.” 


Forty-eighth P'SkJET^ 'Aiinivertery 

K.C. Into High Gear For 
1954; ‘Rifles,’ *My Raby,’ 

Wedneidey, JUuuy 4, 1*54 

Broadway first - run situations { session opened Tuesday (29) after 

swung into the New Year with a 
virtually 100% holdover setup, 
after enjoying a sock Christmas 
week winding up in most spots 
Tuesday or Wednesday last week. 
Nine new bills were launched just 
before or soon after Xmas Pay to 
take advantage of the year-end up- 
surge. This upbeat prior to New 
Year’s Day was bigger than an- 
ticipated by even the most opti- 
mistic managers. Favorable weath- 
er and strong fare spelled the 
higher results. 

Odd part of the Christmas week 
boom is that it did not Include 
New Year’s Eve, as in 1952, at most 
houses. Despite this, last week’s 
total soared to $960,700, consider- 
ably over- expectancy. 

Kven without New Year’s Eve 
bonanza trade, the Music Hall, 
with “Easy To Love” and annual 
Xtnas stageshow soared to terrific j 
$184,000 in its fourth stanza ended 1 

12th week pushed to big $7 <800. 

Palace (RKO) (1,700; 60-$1.20>— 
“Wild One'* (Col) with 8 acts of 
vaude. Opened Wednesday <30 ). In 
ahead, “Bad For Each Other” (Col) 
and vaude, smash $26,000. 

Paramount (Par) (3,664; 70- 

$1 .80)— "Eddie Cantor Story” (WB) 
(2d wk). Current round started 
New Year’s Day (1), Initial week 
soared to great $90,000. Continues 

Paris (Indie) (568; 90-$1.80)— 
"Captain's Paradise” (UA) (14th 
wk). The 14th Week started Mon- 
day (28) with indications that it 
would top the 13th stanza which 
was socko $15,300. 

Rialto (Mage) <600; 50-98)— 

“Striporama" (Indie (14th wk). 
The 14th frame began Friday (1) 
after this exploitation pic climbed 
to $7,200 in 13th week. Continues. 
Rivoli (U AT) (2.092; 95-$2)— 

w , ‘'Khyber Rifles’* (20th) (2d \yk). 
tyednesday 30>, just $2,000 he^ ow First holdover session opened Wed- 
the Hall s all-time mark of $186,- ne sday (30) after initial week 
? £ c ln comparable week Of ! soared ahead to smash $74,000. 
..Tbf • ' ex ^ a _ .midnight show J.This- fourth C-Scoper to be re-: 
with tilted scale a year ago made ] leased in N.Y. looks in for longrun. 

‘ Another amazine°fieure was the ! Kadio City Music Hall (Rocke- 

ih °‘cked no bv S S fellers) (6,200; 90.$2.«0)-."Easy To 
it X aLxea up d\ iziyiim neei I t (M_G) with annual Christ- 


at the Roxy in second round. Go- 
ing far ahead of hopes, it hit a 
terrific $135,000 or $47,000 better 
than opening .week’s total. Overflow 
from Hail naturally helped as it 
did other nearby theatres. 

. . “Eddie Cantor Story’* made the 
best showing 'opening week with 
a great $90,000 at the Paramount. 
“Sadie Thompson” at the larger i 

Love"” (M-G), with annual Christ 
mas stageshow and “Nativity” pag- 
eant (5th-final wk). Current ses- 
sion opened Thursday (31* alter 
fourth week soared to terrific 
$184,000. over expectancy. Long 
lines daily here enabled nearby 
theatres to get plenty “overflow” 
from prospective patrons who did 
'not want 'to .wait. This was $2,000 

Capitol hit a smash $93,000. “Kl£ "“dj in comt*ar^hle 

her Rifles” was socko $74,000 open- . ij? 2, 

ing round at the Rivoli. Both the f, ^ 0Unc ^ 

9 i 

Kansas City, 

Theatres went into 1954 with 
strong bills generally, leader being 
“Knights of Round Table” in its 
second week at the Midland,. “Here 
Come Girls” in second week' at the 
Paramount likewise is very big. 
List of newcomers includes “Para- 
trooper” which opened Dec. 30 at 
the Missouri, "Khyber Rifles” in 
CitiemaScope at the Orpheum, and 
“Walking My Baby Back Home” in 
four Fox Midwest theatres. "Cap- 
tain’s Paradise” hit a hew record 
opening stanza at Vogue. 

Estimates for Last Week 

Midland (Loew’s) (3,500; $1-$1.24) 
—“Knights of Round Table” (M-G) 
(2d wk). Initial CinemaScope at 
this big house and got money from 
start. Smash $29,000 for first 
round. Due to. hold for several 
more weeks. 

Missouri (RKO) (2,650; 60-85)— 
‘‘Paratrooper” .(Col) and “Glass 
Wall” (Col*, Opened Dec. 30. Last 
Week, “Sabre Jet” (UA) and “China 
Venture” (Col), mild. $6,500. 

Orpheum (Fox Midwest) 11,913; 
$1-$1.50)— “The Robe” (20th) (13th 
wk-6 days). Satisfactory $7,500 in 
final week. “Khyiber Rifles” (20th) 
came in Dec. 30 at $1 top. 

Paramount (Tri-States) (1,900; 65- 
85*— “Here Come the. Girls” (Par) 
(2d wk). Last week, smash $14,000. 

Tower, Uptown, Fairway, Gran- 
ada (Fox Midwest) (2,100; 2,043; 
700; 1,217; 65-85*— “Border River” 
(U) and "Clipped Wings” .(AAV 
NSG $10,000. “Walking My Baby 
Back Home” (U) opened Dec. 31. 

. VOgue (Golden) (550; 75-$l)— 
“Captain’s Paradise” (UA) .(2d wk). 
Broke all records under art-film 
policy with wow $4,500 opening, 
stanza, over hopes. 

Cap and Riv were over hopes. 

“The Bigamist,” another new 
entry, pushed considerably over 
expectancy to get a big $27,000 in 
first week at the Astor. Upsurge 

Table” (M-G) opens Jan. 7. 

Roxv (Nat’l. Th.) (5.717; 65-$2.50) 
-“12-Mile Reef” (20th) (3d wk). 
Third stanza started Thursday (31). 
Second week soared way ahead of 

New Year’s Eve contributed to this (Opening week to hit smash $135,- 
haturally. “Lure of Sila." also ' 000. much over hopes. Pic climbed 
new. . hit a smash $12,500 opening , strongly after Monday (28) despite 
round at the New York, j terrific weekend take. 

“Here. Comes the Girls’’ also ; State (Loew’s) (3,450;" 85-$l. 80) 
topped expectations by going to — “All Blathers Valiant” (M-G). 
lofty $43,000 in initial session at . First week started. Monday (28* 
the Mayfair. j and is heading for good $38,000 or 

Estimates for Last Week ! thereabouts. In ahead, “Million- 
Astor 'Citvlnv.) (1.300; 80-81 ;80.i a ire” (20th) (7th wk-6 days), big 
---“The Bigamist” (FR) (2d wk*. $22,000. 

Started initial holdover round Fri- Sutton (R&fi) (561; 90-$L50)— 
day (1) after fine $27,000 opening : “Living Desert” (Disney) (8th wk). 
week, over hopes. First session i This round started Tuesday j(29) 
took in New Year’s eve. ; after racking up fine $9,000 in 

Bijou 'City Inv.) (589; $1.80- seventh week. 

$2.40 >— “Gilbert & Sullivan” (UAV\ Trans-Lux 60th St. (T-L) 90- 
(10th wk'. The 10th frame opened . $1.50) — “Annapurna” (Indie) (4th 
Wednesday (30* after ninth week ! wk'. Fourth round started Satur- 
landed fancy $11,000. i day (2) after third frame reg- 

Baronet ' Reade* *430; 90-S1.50* ! istered nice $6,200. 

—‘ Three Forbidden Stories” (In- Trans-Lux52nd St. (T-L) (540; 
die' (3th wk*. The eighth session 90-S1.50)— “Lili” (M-G) (43d wk). 
began Monday (4) after okay $5.- ! The 43d week started Tuesday , ~ 

200 for seventh week. '■ 1 --' . (29' a ,: tcr soaring to an amazing , a ® sar ’ neat $17,000 at 

Capitol (Loew’s* (4,820: 70-S2.20) $7 500 in 42d round. j .Vl e ? k ewyn ^ on roadshow basis; 

— Sadie Thompson” (Col) (2d wk'. ; Victoria (City Inv) <1.060; 95- 1 Annapurna, fancy $6,300 at the 
Current week started Thursday (3.1).'! SI .80 > — “Man Between” (UA) <7th and Little fugitive,’ sturdy 

after initial stanza soared to smash • wk). Seventh session opened Wed- vo.ouu at the World. 

$93,000. over expectations. nesdav (30) after grabbing fancy; Estimates for Last Week 

Criterion (Moss' (1,700) 85-52.20 • Sl7;000 in sixth week. Continues, : ( 5& K) ; f3 ; 900; 98-$l,25) 

—“Paratrooper” (Col '. Started out 1 with new pic now set. i u>,u lss ^ e e (M-G) (3-D) with 

VVarncr (Cinerama Prod.) (1,600; ! £? 11J ;°bPers t o o p i n g stageshow. 
Sl.20-S3.60) — “Cinerama” (Indie) ! Posted a fine $58,000 but not up to 
(31st wk*. Present round started ; ex P ec tancy with matinee upbeat. 
Friday (1) after soaring to giant ,, -Grand *^^9* G.200; 55-98)— 

S65.000. over expectancy, in ,30th ! _Easy to Love (M.-G) and “Great 


Musicals proved themselves stout 
holiday fare as four out of five 
tuners racked up whopping figures. 
Other bills were helped as usual by 
the holiday hypo with afternoon 
traffic accounting for much of the 

The Chicago garnered a hefty 
$58,000 for “Kiss Me Kate” with 
Hilltoppers topping the vaude bill 
opening round. “Here Come Girls” 
brought a boffo $35,000 to Mc- 
Vickers while “Walking Baby Back 
Home” hit a hot $25,000 at United 
Artists. Gland bagged fine $18;000 
with “Easy to Love.” However, the 
Monroe got only a silim $6,000 for 
“Cruising Down River” arid “PrL 
seiners of Casbah.” All were . in 
their first weeks. 

Other new entries were "Living 
Desert,” big $22,000 at the Loop; 

‘Knights’ Hit 

9 4 

9 l 

Head List, ‘Rifles’ Wow 


Clear weather over the holiday 
week plus new 1 bills in a majority 
of the first-runs gave the midtown 
a seasonal spurt of activity. Late 
shows arid double features marked, 
the New Year’s Eve biz, with the 
three Goldman houses {Randolph, 
Midtown and Goldman) remaining 
open all night. 

; CinemaScope continued fas t 
pace,; with “Khyber Rifles” at the 
Fox, and "12-Mile Reef” both get- 
ting heavy plaiy. The Goldman 
brought in "Sadie Thompson” (3- 
D) for- one-day stand (31). Nice 
weather helped over Jan. 1, with 
annual Mummers Parade bringing 
customary big .throngs, into mid- 
town; . ' ' 

Estimates for Last Week 

Arcadia (S&S> (625; 85-$1.30)— 
“Mogambo” (M-G) (13th wk). Last 
week, -fine $6,000. 

Boyd (SW) (1,459; $1.30-$2.80)— 
"Cinerama” (Indie) (13th wk). Last 
week, holiday helped to socko 
$ 21 , 000 . 

Fox (20th) (2,250; 99-S1.50)— 
"Khyber Rifles” <20th) (2d wk). 
Last week, terrific $54,000. 

Goldman (Goldman) (1,2Q0; 50- 
99)— “Here Come Girls” (Par). 
Last week, “Appointment in Hon- 
duras” (RKO),. oke $13,000. 

Mastbaum (SW) (4,360; 99-$1.30) 
“Easy to Love” (M-G) (2d wk). 
Opening week was only okay 
$ 20 , 000 . 

Midtown (Goldman) (1*000; 74- 
$1.30) — • “Walking Baby Back 
Home” (U). Last week, “Bad For 
Each Other” ICoi), strong $10,000. 

Randolph (Goldman) (2,500; 74- 
$1.30) — “Beyond 12-Mile Reef” 
(20th) (2d wk). Initial week was 
boffo $26,000. 

Stanley (SW) <2,900; 85-S1.25)— 
“Eddie Cantor Story” ( WB ). Last 
week, "Three Sailors and Girl” 
(WB), lean $13,000. 

Stanton (SW) (1,473; 50-99)— 
"War Paint” (A A) and "Jack 
Slade” (AA). Last week, "Gun 
Belt” (UA) and "Sabre Jet” (UA), 
oke $8,000. 

Studio (Goldberg) (500; 85-$1.25) 
—“Captain’s Paradise” (UA) (2d 
wk). East week, great $7,000, 

Trans-Lux (T-L) (500; . 99-$1.50) 
— “Moon Is Blue” (UA) (10th wk). 
Last week', tasty $8,200. 

World (T-L) (500; 76-$ 1.30)— 
“Louis Story” (UA) (2d wk). Last 
week, sock $9,000. 

* Los Angeles 

Boxoffice stimulation which foi 
lowed the end of the pre-Yul* 
shopping period arid opening of » 
brace of strong, new films boosted 
grosses here generally to the best 
Christmas week level since 1943 
Pacing the new bills is the 3^ 
‘‘Knights of Round Table,” whi ch 
is going great guns in second 
frame, after record $40,200 initial 
week at the Egyptian. “12-Mile 

Reef* also is proving a monev 
maker. It s a C’Scoper. 

Holding up the 3-D’crs is “Hoh. 
do,’ still hearty in. two theatres 
after a socko first round. “Sadie 


nicely in first few days after being 
launched Wednesday (30'. Opening 
week has advantage of New Year’s 
Eye and holiday weekend trade. In 
ahead. “Cease Fire” (Par) (5th wk). 
climbed surprisingly to $11,000 in 
final session after doing great on 
initial three weeks. 

Fine Arts (Davis) (468; 90-S1.80'. 

— “Conquest of Everest” (UA) (4th 
wkv Began fourth week Wednes- 
day <30) after great $20,000 in 
third round. 

Globe (Brandt) (1,500; $1-$1,801 

—“Millionaire” (20th * 8 th wk). . 

Present round started Dec ; 29 after ! was the loudest boxoffice bet, ” ith 
smash’ $22,000 for seventh frame, i enough to hold at Broadway. “Cap- 
tain Paradise” had the SRQ signs 
out at the Guild Art Theater. “Easy. 
To Love” was big opening stanza 


; $1-$L80 1— I at the United Artists. Biz is on the | Palace (Eitel) ( 1,484; $1.20-$3.60) 
E). Launched i upgrade after pre-holiday slump, j — “Cirierama” (indie) (22d \vk). 
ahead. “Mar- j Estimates for' Last Week . Nine added shows for holiday week 

second C’Scoper to be re- 
leased in N.Y. looks good for sev- 
eral more weeks. 

Guild (Guild) (450 
"Times Gone By” (IFE 
here Tuesday (29), In 

tin Luther” (Indie) (16th wk). [ Broadway ( Parker), ( l ,890; 65-90) 
wound up terrific longrun with I —“Walking. My Baby Back Horne” 
fine $10,000, over hopes, nearbr'H'U) *2cl wk). Last week, great 

proximity of Music Hall not hurl- ! $13,500. 
ing any. 1 

Holiday (Rose) (950; 95-SI. 80)— ! 

"Public Enemy No. 1” (WB) and : sock $4,400. 

"Little Caesar” (WB) (reissues' Liberty (Hamrick), (1,875; 65-90* 
(4th wk). Present stanza started —Last week, “Thunder Over 
Tuesday (29* after getting great j Plains” (WB), firie $8,000. 

$24,000 in thifd. week. >May wind ' Oriental (Evergreen) (2.000’ 
up run this week because WB ' $1.25-$1.75)— "Robe” (20th) (m 0 (’ 
wants to get combo into , N.Y. cir- ] Big $6,400 for 12 week downtoum 
cu i, i ! Ornheum(Evergreen) (1.600; $l- 

Jlayfair (Brandt (1,736; 70-S1.80) $1,50)— Last week, "Millionaire” 
T" Here Come Girls” (Par) (2d wk). j (20th) (4th wk-6 days), solid $8,000. 
Initial holdover stanza opened Fri-! Paramount (Port-Par) (3;400- 65- 
day (1) after sock $43,000 for open- ' 90)— Last week, “Here Conte Girls” 
ing week. In for run; | (Par), oke $7,400. 

Normandie (Normandie Thca* ; United Artists (Parker) (890- 65- 

Diamond Robbery” (Col). Led off 
five-week stand with fat $18,000. 

Loop (Telem’t) (600; 98-$l;25)— 
“Living Desert” (Disney). Great 
$22,000 on initial session, breaking 
previous kickoff record- of— Mar-t-in- 
Lu.ther” (Indie). 

Me Vickers (JL&S) (2,200; 65-90) 
Three ace musicals dominated j —“Redheads from Seattle” (Par) 
last week’s trade. "Walking Baby” , and “Here Come Girls” (Par). 

Chalked up sockeroo $35,000. 

Oriental (Indie) (3.400; 98-$1.25) 
— “Millionaire” (20th) (5 th wk). 
Sock $38,000, with afternoon biz 

Portland, Ore. 

holiday week 

broke all previous records at smash 

JRcosevelt (B&K) (1,500; 55 98)— 

$13,500. “Thunder Over Plains” (WB) arid 

Guild (Foster) (400; $1) — Last ! “Steel Lady” (UA) (2d) wk),. Fast 
week. Captains Paradise” iUAi, j $16,500 .on holdover round. 

Selwyn (Shubert) (iToOO; $1.25- 
$2.40) — ‘Julius Caesar” (M-G). 
ltvo-a-dayer bagged tidy $17,000. _ 
(B&K) (2.700; 98- 

$1;80)— “Robe” (20th) (14th wk). 
Sniash $38,500. 

0Q^ n .M? d M A . rtisls (B&K) (1,700; 55- 
V lkin S Ba by Back Home” 
<U) and, “Veils of Bagdad” (U). 
Hefty $25,000 on preem week. 

Wood (Essaness) (1.198; 98-$i. 25) 
— Mogambo” (M-G) (7th .. wk).- 
Buoyant $15,000. ■ 

tree) ((Ujor Q5 «i roV wV.7,7 1 ,OJ * u * 0 , 1- 1 World (Indie.) (587; 98*— “Little 

Lovc isia!’ tubbed . ofty 

• Cincinnati. 

Downtown houses are greeting 
1954 with swell lineup of pix. All 
RKO houses upped New Year’s Eve 
scale to $1.25 arid the Keiths added 
25c to its $1.25 regular lop for 
"How Marry Millionaire.” which 
set modem house record in kickoff 
frame. Albee has “Sadie Thomp- 
son” and the Palace has "Hondo” 
for 3-D embellishment. Grand 
opens "Only Brothers Were Vali- 
ant” next. 

Estimates for Last Week 

Albee (RKO> (3.100; 75-$D— 

"Sadie Thompson” (3-D) (Col). Last 
week, "Easv to Love” (M-G), good 
$12,500 at 85c ton. 

Capitol (RKO) (2.000: 55-85)— 
“Here Come Girts” (Par). New 
Year’s Eve only, followed bv Fri- 
day (1) opening on “.Tack Slade” 
(AA). Last Week, "Peter Pari” 
(RKO). dull $5,000. 

Grand (RKO) (1,400: 53-85)— 
‘Brothers Valiant” (M-G) arid 
"Paris Model” (Indie);. Last week. 
"Appointment in Honduras” (RKO) 
and "Marrv Me Again” (RKO), 
fancy $8,000. 

Hyde Park Art (Schwartz) <600; 
$l-$2.20)— “Julius CaeSar” (M^G) 
(2d. wk)^ Holiday help was below 
expectations in opepirig stanza, blit 
bi rr $8 500 any wav. 

ICeith’s (Short (1,500: 85-$l. 25)— 

' Millionaire” (3-D) (20th U2d wk). 
Shaping for strong encore after 
$24,000 last, week, which set house 
record for manv years. 

Palace (RKO) <2.600; 75-$D— 
"Hondo” (3-D) (WB). T.ast we^k. 
"3 Sailors and Girl” (WB*. at 55- 
85c scale, oke $9,000. 

first holdover frame Jan. 1 

after fancy opening week. How/ 
ever, "Kiss Me. Kate,” which was 
rated neat in initial session at the 
State, is going flat, widescreen 
after using 3-D version, opening 
stanza. . 

Among conventionally - lensed 
productions, standouts continue to 
be "Living Desert” and “Wild 

Estimates for Last Week 

Palace, Wiltern, Fox Hollywood 
(Metropolitan-SW-FWC) ( 1,212’ 2. 
344; 756; 70-$l. 10)— “Walking Bah'v 
Back Home” (U) and “Glass Web’’ 
(U) (2-D). Teed off Dec*. 30 as part 
of area day-date holiday run in 18 
situations. Last week, Palace, 
"Mogambo” '(M-G) arid “Calamity 
Jane” (WB), mild $9,000; Wiltern, 
"Quo Vadis” (M-G) (2d wk-6 days), 
only $4,000; Hollywood, sub-run. 

Egyptian (UATC) <1,538; ,$1- 
$1.80) — “Knights Round Table’’ 
(M-G) (2d wk). Launched second 
week Dec. 30 after record $40,200, 
last week. 

Los Angeles, Chinese (FWC) (2:* 
097; 1,905; $1-$1.80) — “12-Mile 
Reef” (20th) (2d. wk). Into second 
w r eek Jan. l following brisk $49,- 

000 last week. 

Loew‘s State (UATC) (2,404; 90- 
$1.20)— "Kiss Me Kate” (M-G) (3-D) 
(2d wk). Started second. Jan. 1 
after neat $16,000 last week. 

Hillstreet, Pantages (RKO) (2.- 
752; 2*812; 95-$1.50) — “Sadie 
Thompson" (Col) • (3-D) (2d wk'. 
Started first holdover frarne Jan. - 
1. First session was fancy $37,000. 

Los Angeles, Hollywood Para- 
mounts (ABPT-F&M) <3.300; 1.- 
430; 85-$ 1.35)— “Hondo” (WB) <3- 
D) (2d wk). Into second week Jan. 

1 after smash $53,000 last week. 

Ritas, Rialto (FWC-MetropolitanV 

(1,363; 839; 90-$1.50)— “Act of 

•Love” (UA) (2d wk). Went into . 
second week Dec. 31. First round 
was fine $13,300. 

Orpheuiri (Metropolitan) (2.213; 
$1)— “Wild One” (Col) and “Tope- 
ka” (AA) (2d wk). Launched second 
/fame New Year's day (1) after 
hangup $19,000 last week. 

Vogue (FWC) (885; 90 $ 1.20)— 
"Conquest Everest” (U A) (2d wk 1 . 
Rolled into second week Friday 
(1) following okay $4,500 last week. 

United Artists, Hawaii (UATt- 
G&S) (2,100; 980; 70-$1.10)— “Here 
Come Girls” (Par). Started second 
week Friday (1). First week was 
fair $14,000. 

Globe, Iris, Uptown (FWC* <782; 
814; 1,715; 70-$1.10).— “Captain’s 

Paradise” (UA) and "Song ot 
Land” (UA) (2d wk). Began second 
frarne Dec. 30 'following moderate 
$9,500 last week. 

Fine Arts (FWC)’ (631; 7O-$1.50) 
—“Living Desert” (Disney) <3d wk'. 
Into third stanza Dec. 31 'after 
socko $11,500 last week, 

El Rey (FWC) (861; 70-Sl-lO^— 
“Little Fugitive” (Indie) (3d wk'. 
Started third week New Years 
Day (1) after okay $4,000 

Warner Beverly <SW) (1.G12: ,90*. 
$1.50) — “Cantor Story” HVfiV. 
Opened run Dec. 30 after .P^/V 
preem Tuesday. '(29). L,:st week. 
“Torch Song” <M-G) (6th wk-5 
days), slight $2,600. 

Four Star (UATC) (900; Sd.50* 
$2.40) — “Julius Caesar”. (M-G 1 <80 
ivk). Started eighth; round Dec. oU, 
Opener was good $6,800. 

Fox Wilsliire, Warner Downtown 
(FWC-SW) (2,296; 1,757;' - $.1'$2 ; ?0) 
—"Millionaire’* (20th) (9th wk vVii- 
shire, 8th wk Downtown*. I*? 1 ,, 
current frame Dec. 31 after 
$22 000 last week. 

Warner Hollywood (SW) G.38L 
$1.20-$2.80) — "Cinerama” 'I-"% 
(36th wk). Into 36th week Jan. J 
following terrific $39,600 last vee 
on 20-performarice stanza. 



* 56 .. 


—N.Y. Mirror 

“Jubilant ... raucous . . . flamboyant! Pro- 
vocative dances. Rita’s a boxoffice dynamo!" 

— N.Y. World-Telegram 


GIVEN!” —N.Y. News 

“Rita’s highly personalized wrigglings of 
her torso, are not calculated to soothe the 
nerves of men ! 99 _n.y. rimes 

“Super-charged excitement! It's apt to 
be one of the biggest grossers Rita ever 

made! —Los Angeles Herald and Express 

ff Rip-roaring and roistering! The picture 
makes much of its lively situations!" 

—Los Angeles Times 

>/ 47 * s ^ 



Screen Play by HARRY KLEI NER, • Based on a story by W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM 

lipimu Un i n Directed by GURTIS BERNHARQJ 


«# . ' 

V7 - — * - - >4 mmvmApamm# 

Wednesday,, January 6, 1954 

History Is Made At Nile 

= Continued from page 4 

to fit their prepared “impromptus.” 
However, I doubt that Benjamin 
Franklin brought on bur Revolu- 
tionary War Just so he could say 
after the signing of the .ueclara- 
tion: “We must now all hang 
together, or hang separately.' 
Even Milton Berle wouldn’t have 
a water-scene, set built, just so he 
can .say to a bald-headed mart in 
the water: “Go down again and 
come up the right way!” 

The credo of the comic is “Wait 
for your laugh, but not. more than 
an hour:” Sonic candidates, with 
''special” material wouldn't : get a 
laugh if they remained on the 
rostrum all night — and often do. 
Best description of a “prepared 
speech.” at a public gathering: 
•'Like the fellow who worked for 
six months forging a check, only 
to have it come back ‘insufficient 
funds’,” But there is no discour- 
aging them. 

Franklin D. Roosevelt often 
asked for situation gags to fit 
certain eventful speeches. One he 
received and .used much in his 
campaigns .was the ‘‘Hillbilly call- 
ing on a girl for a year. Finally 
her father said to him: ‘Are your 
intentions to my daughter honor- 
able or dishonorable?” “You mean 
I got a choice?”. 

I’ll vouch for this. At a big 
dinner, and already he was then 
President, F.DJR. in the ante-room 
before the event asked for an ap- 
-p ro priattr*y a rn , R ehearsed -it- ri gh t 
there and then. Went on for his 
Speech and though he finished to 
tumultuous applause, he seemed 
Upset because lie forgot to inject 
the gag. lie never forgot it after 
that and used it in his major cam- 
paign meetings. The one of the 
fellows who complained that, he 
could not hear or see well. When 
the doctor found out he was a 
drinker, warned him that his 
ebbing sight and hearing was 
caused by that drinking. Patient 
promised to stop it. Two months 
later, the doctor ran into this 
patient again, this time really 
blotto. “Didn’t I tell you to Stop— 
that liquor wns hurting your sight 
and hearing?”. “Yes. doc, but what 
I’ve been drinking is so much 
better than What I’ve been hear-: 
ing and seeing, lately,. I decided 
to continue it.” 

Nobody has to supply the best 
political yarn-spieler of them all- — ^ 
Alben Barkley. In fact, gag- writers 
steal from him. Always a question 
as to who gets it from who? — 
and don't pay. In fact. I’ve heard 
the same -joke used by different 
candidates, on opposition tickets, 
ort the same night, in different 

Occasionally you get a candidate 
doing an ad lib better than he 
knows. Such as the time I said 
to one, “May the best man win.” 
“Oh. so you’re against me, too?” 

Ever since the publicized humor 
of Adlai Stevenson, the fun-fac- 
tories -are— flooded— with -demands 
from all grades of office-seekers, 
for apropos nifties. What they 
think is a privately-owned yarn 
ends up like the three feltows 
sitting together in a train. Right 
opposite, was a lone gentleman 
with a diamond pin in his tie. As 
the train entered a dark tunnel, 
here was the conversation between 
the three fellows: “I’d like to have 
that diamond pin” — I got it” — “You 
had it.” 

1 Who Said It and When? j 

Currently, every stateman is 
getting credit for the line, “When 
you throw mud, you, lose' ground.” 
I heard the unforgettable Jimmy 
Walker phrase it a bit differently. 
“Let them throw mud at you; wait 
till it ‘cakes’ and then throw it 
back.” “An Englishman is the 
same the more he changes,” is an- 
other standard. 

Our barbs at Presidential can- 
didates vary, little, except to 
change the name of the Candidate. 
Used against Thomas E. Dewey 
was the yarn of the farmer who 
always was going to Vote for 
Dewey, for President, because he 
noticed “we always have good 
times right after.” For the record, 
that was also first against a Demo- 
crat, William Jennings Bryan — 
the same gag. 

Once in awhile vou get an 
•’adopter” candidate, like Rudoloh 
(“Kefauver”) Halley, who cops the 
thunder of a telling gag. In his 
late and lamented campaign, he 
..listened to a. yarn being told at a 
banquet. Concerned the novice 
bettor, watching a clergyman 

talking to horse before the race, 
Better figured he was blessing the 
nag arid put $200 down on him: 
•The-horse-finbhed-lastr- He-40oked 

up the clergyman and cried, “On 

account of you blessing that horse, 
I bet on him and lost $200.” “Bless- 
ing him? — I was giving him the 
last rites.” Halley used that yarn 
during the recent Mayoralty cam- 
paign/ but called the horse “Tam- 
many Hall.” 

The -voter in a campaign is the 
chief , joker. More uncomplimen- 
tary gags were tossed around in 
this last Presidential shindig than 
in all campaigns combined. The 
public deosn’t like catchphrases 
such as “He called me Jack.” That 
ruined the chances of John Pur- 
roy Mitchell as a political force in 
New York — it didn’t sit well with 
the hoi-polloi, . when Mitchell 
boasted that Vanderbilt called him 
by his first - name, “Cocktail 
Charlie” killed Vice-President 
Charles Fairbanks’ chances for the 
Presidency, when he took , the 
blame for serving the cocktails: 
that were really ordered by 
Theodore Roosevelt. To this day 
nobody really knows what was 
meant by it, . When the Whole 
country Was saying: “You can’t 
kick my dog around,” that both 
made and broke Champ Clark. 
History will give more space to 
political punchlines of Harry Tru- 
man, Xhan any recorded Of even 
rugged “Old Hickory.” 

' The World Laughs With You 

The saying goes, “That which 
will not bend. will break.” .Amer- 
ica is the most pliable of nations. 
It will laugh at the. drop of a hat. 
especially if the guy / is still in it. 
There isn’t an event, political or 
natural, that fails to elicit a gag, 
nun or wisecrack. So much so; 
that it was only natural to develop 
actual organizations of rib and 
roast. The Circus Saints & Sin- 
ners : — Gridiron — Inner Circle- 
Correspondents Dinner -X Anvil 
Chorus and growing groups all 
over the land, to spoof the mighty 
and to sit with them. The targets 
of these barb-bandits are afraid to 
stay away from the events and 
have to “laugh it up,” to show they 
can “take it.’ f Or as one mean 
said, “Politics not. only makes 
strange bedfellow, but that’s how 
learning to sleep with one eye 
open was invented.” It’s traditional 
for even the White House, to per- 
sonally invite leading comedians, 
such as Will Rogers and Bob Hope, 
to “tell it” to the President, him- 
self, who occasionally looks over 
the material, before the other 
guests arrive. Only President 
Hoover forget to edit A1 Jolson, at 
a Command Performance, but of 
that at another time. 

But as it ail now stands, hired- 
humor is playing a growing part 
in national and international! life. 
The “jokes” often matching the 
same, in politics. The “laugh” is 
now used to get work — and Uncle 
Sam isn’t a bad sponsor, 


Deal has been set for News of 
the Day. newsreel jointly owned by 
Metro and the Hearst Corp., to 
take over Telencws. national 
newsreel service for TV stations. 
Connected with the transaction is 
International News Service, the 
j Hearse press association which 
served as representatives and dis- 
tributors fpr Telenews. 

New arrangement between INS 
and News of the Day will be much 
the same as that between 20th- 
Fox’s Movietone News and the 
United Press for- a special video 
newsreel. . Telenews previously 
serviced CBS, blit at present its 
only network client is ABC in ad- 
dition to many individual stations. 
CBS dropped the service when it 
established its own reel. 


Peter Lorre to Hollywood 


Peter Lorre, absent from Holly- 
wood for four years, returns to 
take a leading role in Walt 
Disney’s CinemaScoped “20,000 
Leagues Under the Sea,” filmiza- 
tion of the Jules Verne classic. 

Lorre will depart from his usual 
villainy to portray the scientist 
; Conseil in the color pie. Kirk 
! Douglas stars. Lensing starts Jan. 
i 11, at Nassau. 


The past year has brought us 
new dimensions in production and 
exhibition, and in policies of the- 
atre operation, resulting. In a re- 
birth of public enthusiasm and 
acceptance of motion picture en- 
tertainment^ but apparently lack- 
ing I has been the introduction of 
new blood and the proper use of 
the young blood in our industry. 

In order to encourage those at 
the bottom of the ladder and those 
who had come from the outside to 
make their careers in our great 
industry, there must be incentive— 
not just glamor, not just , a title— 
but in the pocketbook, and In the 
encouragement and praise where 
it has been earned. 

Further, - it is essential that we 
create intelligent and constructive 
training programs. Considering 
the need and the great scope, very, 
little has been done in the past in 
proper training, and certainly 
there has been little continuity to 
what little has been done.. It is 
gratifying to note that the last few 
months have seen Some activity in 
this field': 

There is great need for nation- 
wide clinics, on the local level, for 
managers and other members of 
the theatre staff in theatre opera- 
tion, advertising, exploitation, com- 
munity service, public relations, 
etc. Many of our circuits have 
been doing this for years, but 
such clinics could be of inestimable 
value to the majority of exhibi- 
tors, the independents. 

These “back to school” sessions 
could be not only instructive, but 
also stimulating to the newcomers 
to our business— proving grounds 
for the recruits and stepping 
stories to careers of solid founda- 

Another basic fault in our han- 
dling 'of personnel is the lack of 
placing resppnsibilty where— it be- 
longs and allowing the many 
capable young persons and execu- 
tives. to follow through on their 
own merits.. Unfortunately, be- 
cause of the pressure Of time, the 
fear of mistakes and the heavy 
thumb of the old order, the imagi- 
nation and initiative that have 
been so apparent on all sides have 
not beep adequately encouraged. 

We have failed, I believe, by al- 
lowing too few members of the 
many millio ns associated with 
showmanship to have a sense of 
participation — a sense of helping to 
create. Too often the “top brass” 
has hogged the credit lines; too 
often have the profit-participation 
plans bpen corifined to the higher 


Frankly, I feel that one of the 
best ways of helping ourselves on 
this whole subject is to make 
broader and broader profit-partici- 
pation plans in all facets of the 
industry. These can and must be 
logically and thoroughly co-ordi- 

In order to weld an effective 
nucleus of personnel in any com- 
pany, it is essential that these per- 
sons have a sense of being a vital 
member of the whole team — a feel- 
ing this is their . career — and a 
sense of permanency, with a high 
regard and devotion for their 
chosen work. 

Pride of ownership is a basic 
characteristic of every good citi- 
zen, arid this applies also to the 
ownership of a job— of the Work 
lie does and the position he occu- 
pies in his community. 

■Pride mu,st come from within 
the individual, and he is unlikely 
to attain it without a sincere be- 
lief that, his work is all-important 
not only to himself, but also to his 

Therefore, to the new dimen- 
sions and the new policies, we 
must add new blood and new 
methods to stimulate the inherent 
ability of our personnel. 

Fourth-annual Comm u n ion 
breakfast for Catholic .filmites is 
set for Jan. 31 at; the Waldorf As- 
toria, N. Y., following 9 a.m. Mass 
at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, 

First such Communion get-to- 
gether was held four years ago arid 
since has, spread to New Orleans 
L. A., Detroit and Toronto. 

fewer But Better Fix 

Continued from page 31 

lieve our engagement was the out- 
standing one for the : 3-D engage- 
ments. We have, followed that up 
with an exciting arid successful en- 
gagement of John Wayne in 
“Hondo” in our four large Texas 
cities, which convinces me that 
3-D has a great chance and oppor- 
tunity, arid I must admit that since 
“Bwana Devil” we have;, ap- 
proached third-dimension a little 
bit differently. We, ourselves, put 
a paper brad which formed a hinge 
in the first fragile paper glasses 
that were ; used. We now use a 
Sterlloptics plastic frame with 
Polaroid centres, which are ster- 
ilized after each use, and which 
are just as firm as the eyeglasses 
you wear every day. 

We have been in a position to 
watch closely our 3-D presenta- 
tions and have received great co- 
operation from our booths. How- 
ever, there is no doubt in my mind 
that the single projector 3-D, such 
as Moroptican or Nord, will elim- 
inate many, of the ills, guarantee 
synchronization, and most impor- 
tant, in our situation, Would elirri- 
iriate three operators a Week at a 
cost, in downtown Dallas, of $315 
due. to the synchronization of two 
machines. Which would be elim- 

In my opinion, the most archaic 
part of the motion picture distri- 
bution system is the present plan 
of individual branch operations. 
The greatest progress in the world 
could be made by a combination 
in the 31. exchange areas. 

So. far, 3-D has been very success- 
ful for us, although I must advise 
you that we have not played in ariy 
important theatres, the so-called 
lesser 3-D pictures, and I believe 
that by selling only what we con- 
strued the top A pictures, follow- 
ing “Bwana Devil,” we have main- 
tained our market. As you can 
gather from the above! we think 
stereophonic sound is a great as- 
set and, despite its costs, should 
be used where practical, taking 
into consideration that there are 
unquestionably thousands, of small 
theatres that should be furnished 
product With a single track sound, 
eliminating stereophonic sound in. 
the later runs. 

~ 1 


Something must be done as to 
duplicate versions of CinemaScope 
films, and I believe that shortly 
you will find they will be able to 
be presented with single track, but 
its great value is the method of 
presentation and should be main- 
tained^ ju that, scope until ^atl least 
75% or 80% of the business has 
been gained. 

In my opinion, theatres that do 
not convert to the new modern 
method of, presentation will be ob- 
solete and out of date. ^Regardless 
of the argument of the tax reduc- 
tion carripaign, there will be many 
thousands of fringe, or almost ob- 
solete, theatres eliminated. 

1 Flatties Too | 

Spectacles such as “Quo Vadis” 
and "The Robe” are great wide- 
screen attractions, but certainly 
our success with “Shane” leads us 
to believe that thbre can be some 
fantastic results there also. “How 
to Marry A Millionaire” indicated 
again that CinemaScope is a big 

As to “production letting down 
exhibition” on 3-D,— it. is my opin- 
ion that some of these pictures 
which were rushed through in 
third-dimension should have “stood 
:ift bed.” There certainly was an 
attempt to get. on the bandwagon 
with- inferior product, and this is 
the product I referred to as not 
playing our better theatres. 

One thing I would like to add: 
I find that in . the motion picture 
exhibition it’s the only industry in 
America! that has a tendency to 
low-rate or belittle its own mer- 
chandise. By that I mean most! of 
the knocking has been done about 
our attractions from within our 
own ranks— -and it is time we got 
on a soapbox and shouted to the 
housetops that nowhere in the 
world can they get so much for so 
little as in the motion picture 
theatres of the country. 

Show Tunes 

Continued front, page j 

magic be Mary Martin, with whom 
v/e’ve been going steady for year? 
or Lee Wiley, with' whom we’ve aUn 
been going steady; or Lehman En 
gel, who does the magniiicient m l 
S'cai comedy sets for Columbia- Z 
Jack Cassidy, whose Victor of “Tho 
Most Beautiful Girl in the World* 
contains the tun^s rarely heard 
verse; or the pages of Jack Bur 
ton’s indispensable “Blue Book of 
Broadway Musicals”; or Hush 
Shannon, who is the saddest of tn 
the sad young men; of Atlantic 
the label that issues so many rec- 
ords to our taste; or Ted. Straeter- 
or George Byron; or Dorothy Carl 

All of this may strike some of 
you as a little silly, a little adoles- 
cent, a little department-of-incon- 
sequential-information, as it Were 
But since When has it been a felony 
to be a little silly; since when a 
Federal offense to want to turn 
back the clock and let the past as- 
sail yoiir heart and perhaps even 
break it a little; since when has it 
been actionable to delight in the 
possession of the odd fact? Can a 
man be arrested for being prideful 
of his knowledge that Lois Moran 
v.ho was in the original “Of Thee* 
I Sing,” was the . inspiration for 
Rosemary Hoyt in Scott Fitzger- 
ald's “Tender Is the Night?” Well, 
can he? Because if he can, then 
I should have taken it on the lam 
many years ago. Me, I am the sort 
of man who loves the odd fact and 
I occupy my time not only with 
the memory of valiant Art Acord, 
but of Eddie Polo as. well. The 
things i worry about! What two 
baseball players were voted 
World’s Series shares when their 
respective teams won the pennant 
but never received them? And 
why? Who was the Sweetwater 
Cyclone? And if those are beyond 
you, name the movie that uses the 
title of Cole Porter’s “Bad for Me’’ 
in a discussion of man’s moral de- 

And while you are about it, tell 
me if you can— because I wish I 
knew the answer— why it is that all 
of us, all of us lovers of old and 
neglected show turies who are in- 
cessantly bemoaning the fact that 
they are neglected . . ; Why is it 
that we’d be simply livid if any of 
these tunes should ever make The 
Hit Parade. 


Continued from page 4 

emerges as the dominant figure or 
group ip the revised Shubert setup. 

Lacking definite word about the 
Government’s plans, it’s assumed 
that Federal Justice John C. 
Knox’s dismissal of the monopoly 
suit will be appealed tp the Court, 
of Appeals. Argument would pre- 
sumably be that the case is riot 
similar to the Supreme Court’s rul-- 
ing in the big league baseball suit. 
High tribunal decided in the latter 
instance that “basebands a sport - 
and thus not within the scope of 
the antitrust laws. 

In tossing out the Shubert suit, 
Knox said, “In principle, I can see 
no valid distinction between the 
facts of this case and those which 
were before the Supreme Court in 
the case of Federal Baseball Club 
of Baltimore vs. New York Yan- 
kees, et al., decided by the Su- 
preme Court verdict, the judge had 
said he would entertain a dismis- 
sal motion. 

Ironically, dismissal of the suit 
came just five days after the death 
of Lee Shubert, generally regard- 
ed as the dominant figure, in the 
Shubert empire and, as such,- the- 
principal target of the Govern- 
ment action. Also, according to 
well-informed quarters, the Shu- 
berts had tentatively decided last 
summer to accept a consent de- 
cree in the case, but finally balked 
over actual terms. Specifically. 
Lee Shubert refused to ’divest 
some of the more valuable Broad- 
way theatres, the imperial in par- 

The suit, which had been slated 
for trial next morith, was originally 
filed Feb. 21, 1950. It named as de- 
fendants Lee and Jacob J. Shu- 
bert,- Marcus Heiman and the 
United Booking Office, which he 
heads, and also the Select Thea- 
tres Corp. and L. A. B. Amuse- 
ment Corp., Shubert subsidiaries. 

Complaint charged the defend- 
ants with violation of the anti-trust 
laws in conspiring to monopolize 
inter-state trade and commerce m 
the booking of legit attractions 

throughout the U. S. 




Wednesday, January 6, X954 

Show Biz ‘53-Wotta Year! 

Continued from page 3 

the year’s ‘‘sex-toot shelf' best- 
sellers, • 

“Dragnet” (dum-da-da-dum) take- 
offs were as numerous as the new 
wave of bop jokes.- Red Buttons 
and Wally Cox’s upsurged. Ava and 
Sinatra (again); Aly and Gene 
Tierney, Rita and Dick Haymes 
w ere conversational twosomes. 
Dave Garroway and Steve Allen 
were the Harold Lloyds of the 
Iconoscopes. Ike’s golf . displaced 
Harry’s piano, Gwen Verdon’s 
“Can-Can” and the N.Y. cops’ 
raids on 52d St. clip-and-gyp joints 
made news. Ditto Eartha Kitt’s 
earthy "Santa Baby” with or with- 
out Greek royalty. Julius LaRosa 
Was fired in public and became a 
national hero because of it. 

‘Grandma, What Big Eyes 
You Have !— A la Dietrich 

The 53-year-old glamorous grand- 
mother, Marlene Dietrich, : made 
the wire services not only as “the 
highest-priced saloon act irt the 
world” (reportedly $30,000 a week 
for three weeks; actually $20,000. a 
week), but because of her daring 
striptease gown — nude, under 
^gossamer, lace, from the waist up. 

Las Vegas enjoyed “New Year’s 
Eve in July” business as stars from 
concert and Hollywood, legit and 
the Met hit the Nevada saloons, 
among them Tallulah Bankhead, 
Lauritz Melchior, Ezio Pinza, ^Nel- 
son Eddy. Helen Traubel, Jeanette 
MacDonald, the Gabors (ZaZa has 
displaced Faye Emerson and Dag- 
mar in the public prints), among 
others. Said Tallu, “We’re the 
greatest shills for the gambling 
joints. Why do we do it? For the 
loot, dahlings, the loot! It’s won- 
. derfl loot!” 

Nitery showmen like Lou Wal- 
ters counseled that it was better 
for certain names to work for ‘‘sen- 
sible” salaries of $5,000 and $7,500 
a Week in the niteries, getting 30, 
40 and even 50 weeks a year’s con- 
tracts. than aim for those impossi- 
ble 20G and 25G figures at Las 
Vegas, where they can only 
achieve it orice-around — or maybe 
twice, but never within the same 
year. "But,” says Walters, "they 
(the stars) like it better because 
It gives ’em something to ham 
about at Hillcrest (the Beverly 
Hills country club) or Romanoff’s.” 

The Palace again made an abor- 
tive attempt to revive two-a-day 
vaudeville and Betty Hutton’s six 
weeks were good but not great. 
Danny Kaye ended a 14-week 
smash run early in ’53 with gross 
takings of $744,692, at $4.80 and 
$6 top (which is a Broadway legit 
show scale), of which he netted 
$456,036. or an average of $32,574 
per week for 14 weeks. 

Vaudeville Mostly Just a 
Word Signifying Nothing 

Vaudeville, per se, despite the 
occasional sentimental journeys 
back to the Palace two-a-day is 
now virtually an academic term. 
With the passing of the bandshow 
policy from the Broadway Para- 
mount, which went 100% pix and 
the Roxy with CinemaScppe only 
Radio City Music Hall stageshows 
remain in the Broadway sector. 
The Apollo, in New York’s Harlem, 
with its dominantly Negro talent, 
plus the occasional Latin Variety 
acts at the Hispano in “Spanish 
. Harlem” and the converted Brook- 
lyn Strand, represent what’s left 
of “round” actors in .the metro- 
politan New York variety field. 

Robert M. Weitman, longtime 
managing director of the Broad- 
way Paramount Theatre, who had 
pioneered the bandshow policy 
there, meantime segued into the 
production yeepee spot at the just 
merged American Broadcasting- 
ParamoUnt Theatres, an important 
mating” 1 between the American 
Broadcasting Corp. and the United 
Paramount Th eatres, . which 
brought together Leonard H. Gold- 
erison arid Edward J. Noble (he 
also owns Life Savers), and put 
“the three Bobs”— Robert E. Kint- 
ner, prez of ABC, Robert M. Weit- 
man and Robert H. O’Brien, veeps 
of Par UPT — into the combined 
broadcasting - and - theatres opera- 

Among other personality high- 
lights of the year were Adolph 
Zukor’s 8Qth birthday and the cele- 
bration of his 50th anniversary as 
a showman, capped by his auto- 
biog, “The Public’s Never Wrong” 
(as told to Dale Kramer). Sophie 
Tucker's Golden Jubilee was an- 

other highlight show biz event 
Sloan Simpson O’Dwyer came back 
from Spain to a IVOR radio and 
TV contract, and Gene Kelly came 
back jfcom a tax holiday of 19 
months with $280,000, of the $390,- 
000 he earned abroad- which he 
could keep. 

Guy Mitchell, Abbott & Costello 
and Frankie Laine’s big clicks at 
the London Palladium further 
proved the British love for Ameri- 
can acts, despite the Martin & 
Lewis contretempts with the Brit- 
ish critics. 

Legit Jackpot Hit By 
Russell, Kerr and Wayne 

In legit, .1953 was a jackpot 
year for Rosalind Russell in “Won- 
derful Town”; Deborah Kerr in. 
“Tea and Sympathy”; Dayid Wayne 
in “The Teahouse of the August 
Moon.” It took Josephine Hull 50 
years to' become a fullfledged 
Broadway. star in “Solid Gold Cad- 
illac,” the Howard Teichmann- 
George S. Kaufman play. The fall 
was also marked by the return of 
Katharine Cornell in “The Pres- 
cott Proposals”; the Click of “Me 
and Juliet”; the newst Rodgers & 
Hammerstein musical despite the 
mixed notices; Mary Martin and 
Charles Boyer in Norman Krasna’s 
“Kind Sir/’ with its $600,000 ad- 
vance sale as offset to the poor, 
press; the critical break for “Kis- 
met,” because of the press black- 
out due to the newspaper strike; . 
Margaret Sullavan and Joseph Got- 
ten in “Sabrina Fair”; and “Oh 
Men, Oh Women,” a December hit 
entry with Franchot Tone. Betty 
vpn Furstenberg and Gig Young in 
the Edward Choderov comedy. 

A new crop of Broadway “play” 
boys cropped up, i.e;, earnest work- 
ers in the theatre despite their 
wealth and. prominence. This was 
in contrast to the yesteryear play- 
boy, symbolized by the “stagedoor 
johnny,” Among “sincere” the- 
atre enthusiasts are Walter P. 
Chrysler Jr., Anthony B. Farrell. 
Michael Grace (shipping line 
family), George Nicholas 3d. Hunt- 
ington Hartford 2d, T. Edward 
Hambleton, Roger L. Stevens, 
Blevins Davis. The only winner 
thus far is Davis who. with Robert 
Breen, has clicked with the revival 
of "Porgy and Bess.” 1 

Older serious-minded investors- 
impresarios of the past have in- 
cluded John Hay (Jock) Whitney, 
Joseph Verner Reed (who “talked 
back” to Broadway in a book of 
his experience titled “The Curtain 
Falls”), Edgar F. Luckenbach (an- 
other scion of a shipping family), 
Rowland Stebbins who, as “Law- 
rence Rivers,” produced “Green 
Pastures.” Then there was Edgar 
B. Davis (of the renowned if not 
famed “The Ladder.” Alfred de 
Liagre Jr., and the late Dwight 
Deere Wiman were both alumni of 
the Yale Drama School. Dorothy 
Willard and the Rockefellers also 
bankrolled some of Max Gordon’s 
yesteryear plays at the Center The- 
atre in Rockefeller Center, now a 
television playhouse and soon to be 
demolished to make room for a 
19-story office building to house 
the U. S. Rubber Co. 

Readings and Small Cast 
Novelties Vary in Impact 

Earlier in the year, after a 12- 
week warmup in six cities cover- 
ing 14,000 miles and 80 perform- 
ances, Paul Gregory brought 
Stephen Vincent Benet’s “John 
Brown’s Body,” with Judith Ander- 
son, Tyrone Power and Raymond 
Massey, to Broadway; staged by 
Charles Laughton. The critics 
raved excepting the News’ John 
Chapman, who opined it was great 
“for those who are looking for a 
nap,” and business was only so-so. 
Last year Laughton’s "Don Juan in 
Hell,” which he directed for Greg- 
ory, with himself, Charles Boyer, 
Sir Cedric Hardwicke and Agnes 
Moorehead in the cast, was in the 
same idiom. - 

Beatrice Lillie’s onerstar show 
started a cycle but none as re- 
soundingly as her, with the excep- 
tion of Cornelia Otis Skinner in 
“Paris, ’90” and Victor Borge’s one- 
man divertissement. Emlyn Wil- 
liams toured in Dickensonian read- 
ings; and Anna Russell and Ethel 
Waters had short-lived Broadway 
runs this fall with their one-woman 

In 1953, Rodgers & Hammerstein 
concluded deals for control of their 
properties, where possible. It’s 

their' “personal Fort Knox,” ac- 
cording to Broadway palaver, with 
an eye to setting up estate values. 
Thus, they gained complete con- 
trol of “Oklahoma,” paying the 
Theatre Guild over $800,000 for all 
future rights; and turned . around 
and sold the property to the Joe 
Schenck-George Skouras (now the 
late) Lee Shubert-Mike Todd syn- 
dicate, to be filmed in the new 65 
millimeter Todd-AO process, which 
the American Optical Co. devel- 

On the subject of “estates,” Irv- 
ing Berlin again nixed a biopic 
deal during his, lifetime, A pic- 
ture based on his songs and career 
will be something his survivors 
will have to decide* Meantime, he 
put together two packages, the. 
first for Paramount in a: three-way 
partnership ■ with ; Bing Crosby, 
himself and Par on “White Christ- 
mas.” The other is next year’s 
package for. Ethel Merman at 20th- 
Fox called “There’s NO Business 
Like Show Business,” the evolu- 
tion of the song excerpt, from Miss 
Merman’s original ‘‘Annie Get 
Your Gun,” as done on Broadway 
Several seasons back.. Her impac* 
in “Call Me Madam,” also for 20th- 
Fox, resulted in “Show Business,” 
but she decided against any work 
for a year, preferring to do occa- 
sional guesters, but chiefly to take 
it easy following her marriage to 
Bob Stix. 

Berlin still has hopes for a Mu- 
sic Box Revue, on ^roadway, but 
chances are that, a “Cheek to 
Cheek” film package for Fred 
Astaire will intervene. Donald 
O’ConnOr, who was forced out of 
"White Christmas” by illness, will 
be in "Show, Business.” Danny 
Kaye, who was added to the 
Crosby - Rosemary Clooney - Vera 
Ellen cast, was given 10% of the 
picture, with all three, previous 
partners ceding him, 
plus his $200,000 fee. 

Bette Davis’ $320,000 flop as the 
star of “Two’s Company,” an abor- 
tive legit musical, was another 
1953 highlight, along with Mary 
Pickford, admitting to 60, repris- 
ing her World War I tour oh be- 
half of Liberty Bonds, getting a 
sendoff from President Eisen- 
hower to spark a U. S. Savings 
Bond drive. 

There were unusual “opposi- 
tions” on Broadway such as Danny 
Kaye in person at the Palace and 
his “Hans Christian Andersen” 
concurrently in. movies. Rosalind 
Russell, marking her Broadway 
musical comedy stardom in "Won- 
derful Town” (originally "My Sis- 
ter Eileen”), “opposed” herself in 
“Never Wave At A Wac.” Arthur 
Kennedy starred in Arthur Mil- 
ler’s play, “The Crucible” and a 
42d St. "shooting gallery” sensa- 
tionalized him in the film, "Lusty 

(Incidentally the American Bar 
Assn, attacked "The Crucible” for 
its aspersions on the legal profes- 
sion but Miller ignored their in- 
vitation to rewrite on tone down. 
It was a pressagent’s stunt that the 
"Chambermaid’s Union” picketed 
the play, "Midsummer,” because 
Of its invidious references to 
“slovenly maids.”) 

Songwriters Sue, Charging 
Broadcasters’ Conspiracy 

Continuing a trend marked for 
many years,, entertainment became 
more and more mechanized. With 
centralized control of media, came 
floods of antitrust suits. Some- 
thing new for 1953 Was a revival, 
after 13 years, of litigation be- 
tween musiemakers and broadcast- 
ers. This time group of songwrit- 
ers (purposely excluding publish- 
ers) sued the radio-teleyision-pho- 
nograph interests charging a “con- 
spiracy” to keep down the com- 
pensation paid to songwriters for 
the “basic raw material” of me- 
chanical entertainment. ** Interest- 
ingly, it was argued that only one 
set of film tunes— from a Mario 
Lanza picture— could make the 
Hit Parade against the alleged 
conspiracy. (Songwriter action will 
probably not come to trial before 

Lanza, as “Caruso,” was^TTnci- 
dentally, one of the most success- 
ful examples of a film “biography” 
along with Larry Parks click as 
Jolson. Currently, newcomer Keefe 
Brasselle is impersonating the 
still-very-much-alive Eddie Cantor 
in a biopic and Sidney Soklsky is 
plotting still another biopic— the 
life of jimmy Durante. 

Mario Lanza’s display of old- 
fashioned temperament saw him- 
self washed out of the motion pic- 
ture industry after a sensational, 
if short, u^iirge. The singer. 

wobbled back to the concert stage, 
75 to 100 pounds overweight. 

So you remember 1953 for crazy- 
mixed-up kids, and bop jokes and 
Anne Baxter smoking cigars, and 
New York’s hot weather campaign 
to put over Bermuda shorts for 
male comfort. (Traditionally, box- 
office treasurers in those Broadway 
houses remaining open wear only 
their dinner jackets and are more 
comfortably attired below the. cage- 
line of vision. And you remem- 
ber 1953 for a $3,500-a-week 20th 
CenturyrFox film star, June Haver, 
returning from the Sisters of 
Charity nunnery arid for important 
executive exits, as per L. B. Mayen 
out of Cinerama and William 
Goetz Out as Universal’s produc- 
tion topper and the WaUis-Hazeir’s 
blowoff at Paramount. 

Gregory Peck may. have 
made one of the sagest cracks 
of 1953 when he declared, 

“ There are only two . $1,000,000 
actors in the business today— 
Crosby and Hope. After that 
you gotta go back to Harold 
Lloyd and Mary Pickford. ,t 

Peck: was among the many Holly- 
wood players doing films in Europe 
and Africa. Others absent from the 
States most of 1953 were Clark 
Gable, Ava Gardner, Gene Kelly, 
Enroll Flynn, Claudette Colbert, 
John Huston, William Wyler, Kirk 
Douglas, Gary Cooper, Orson 
Welles. Martin & Lewis made 
cable news by attack on the critics 
of London. 

High on the list of significant de- 
velopments of the year were (1) 
David Sarnoff’s demonstration of 
television sound-on-tape; (2) the 
definitive Settlement of the color 
standards issue by the FCC ; (3) 
the growth of the. vidpix industry 
as a bridge between Hollywood, 
that was, and television, that will 
be; ( 4 ) sundry innovations and 
dreams in the area of home-toll and 
closed-circuit video. 

Technological Innovations 
Confusingly Numerous 

So numerous were moving pic- 
ture technological innovations dur- 
ing 1953 that it is a task to keep 
the very names straight. Cinerama 
rode out its first full year as the 
catalystic agent that produced a 
new era of experiment in produc- 
tion and projection methods. For a 
time Cinerama* Was in the peculiar 
predicament of being a boxoffice 
wow that could not obtain Wall 
Street financing. . But Cinerama’s' 
troubles were happily solved at 
last by the deal with Stanley War- 
ner Theatres* 

In the fall, Cinemascope came 
rolling in on a wave of oldfash- 
ioned Barnurinesque exploitation. 
In the perspective of show biz his- 
tory it is likely that Spyros 
Skouras and Daryl Zanuck made 
and won one of the greatest all-out 

Invidious comparison or not, the 
. combined impact of Cinerama and 
Cinemascope threw 3-D Into 
eclipse, Depthies palled because of 
the sameness of “scaring” the cus- 
tomers with, animals or projectiles 
leaping from the screen. “Do you 
want a lion in your lap or a good 
show?” the late Joe Burstyn ad- 
vertised. Polaroid and other 
manufacturers of prism glasses 
struggled to solve the practical 
problems (including fears of eye 
infection due to re-used specs ) . 
Toward year end, the drooping 
prestige of 3-D was showing signs 
of reviving under the hypo of im- 
proved product, notably Metro’s 
“Kiss Me, Kate,” Hal Wallis’ 
“Cease Fire,” John Wayne’s 
“Hondo,” etc. 

A former radio writer, Arch 
Oboler, started the whole 3-D thing 
with his ‘Bwana Devil,” made for 
small dough but a big mopup de- 
spite its mediocrity. Oboler it was 
who years ago wrote the “Adam 
and Eve” skit which Mae West 
played on the Chase & Sanborn 
hour one Sunday evening to the 
discomfiture of NBC arid J.. Walter 
Thompson. In passing, it. Was 
Bryan Foy who directed Warners’ 
first 3-D film, “House of Wax”; 
and the same Bryan Foy pioneered, 
over a quarter-of-a-ceritury, earlier, 
when he produced Warners first 
all-talkie, “Lights of New York.” 

The mating of electronics with 
the boxoffice continued apace with 
closed-circuit pickups of top fights, 
football games and kindred events. 
A culminating event was the Tele- 
meter experiment, in Palm 
Springs, the southern California 
desert resort Where normal video 
reception is difficult because of 
j the surrounding San Jacinto 
'Mountains. Paramount Pictures 
] (not the theatre company) owhs 

50% of the Telemeter 
which is, as the name imp] il en J 
coin-meter attachment to an v ur 
set which unscrambles sneoLi 
close-circulated, events fmotJn 
pictures, sports, and the like) 
a given fee, aimed at $1, average 

A feast or famine fate doesn't 
rest well with the film biz sen 
erally. Despite the 5,000 ihoatrl* 
closings in recent years, these hav* 
been replaced by almost as many 
drive-ins, “ozoners” as Variety 
calls ’em- There still are mor* 
than 15,000 screens of assorted 
sizes yawning for celluloid. They 
all can’t be widescreens, or 'W*- 
projections. 5 

Spokesmen for rank-and-file the 
atreowners aro very vocal in de* 
manding that Hollywood keen 
their screens supplied with every 
type of picture— not just the 
supers, the Scopes, and the wide, 
screen epics. Universal, for one 
went about fulfilling that market 
and has hit peak grosses. The ex- 
hibs contend going-to-the-movies is 
a mass habit, and it’s suicide to 
risk losing that long-established 
family habit. 

Summing up 1953 Was a situa* 
tion in Buffalo. The Century The. 
atre ballyhooed, “First Time In 
Buffalo, Giant Magic Mirror Pano- 
ramie Screen,” The Lafayette 
bragged, “Giant New Magniglow- 
Astrollte Screen.” The Paramount 
Theatre heralded, “First in Ameri- 
ca— Dynpptic 3-D.” The Buffalo 
proclaimed “Cinemascope— with- 
out Glasses.” Only the Center 
was just showing pictures. 

The opinion crystalized as the 
year wore on that the film house 
of the future will probably have 
all-purpose equipment in order to 
accommodate widescreen, stereo- 
phonies, 3-D, 2-D, closed-circuit 
spots, and younameit. 

Of the top grossers on Broadway 
one Week in late fall, ail were flat- 
ties — “Mogambo” (Gable-Gardner ), 
“Gilbert & Sullivan” ( British), 
“The Little Fugitive,” an indie* 
made picture, costing about $125,- 
000 and which may gross $500,000, 
“The Actress” (Tracy-Jean Sim- 
mons), “Murder on Broadway” and 
“So Big.” 

Many See Theatres-to-Com 
‘Equipped for Every thing’ 

The Hollywood producers recog- 
nize that while the jury is still out 
on the sundry scopes, 3-D, 2-D. the 
upcoming Todd-AO (for American 
Optical, which is a 65mm system), 
and Cinerama, their production 
decisions will be geared to plot 
needs. A spectacle of size natu- 
rally lends itself to Cinemascope, 
although there, are diehard s who 
persist that “The Robe” in old- 
fashioned Technicolor and 2-D 
would still have been a big gross* 
ing picture. 

Barging into 1954, Hollywood 
seems intent on a nothing but* 
“big”-pictures. Against this drift 
theatretowners protest that ■ their 
screens may become empty maws 
hungry for features to fill playing 
time and further philosophize that 
! ‘going-to-the-movies traditionally 
has been a mass family habit, and 
don’t let’s ‘class’ ourselves out of 

So, the pictures business weath- 
ered the technological upheaval of 
1953, just as it rode out the tele- 
vision threat. There remains the 
cleavage into two camps among 
major producers and theatreown- 
ers. The producers are committed 
to nothing but “big” pictures, 
counting on extended runs, like a 
click legit show on Broadway, 
which runs one or two seasons. 
The exhibitors, on the other hand, 
argue that , “going to the movies 
is traditionally a family habijt 
“which must not be broken in the 
neighborhoods and small towns 
needing .3-4-5 weekly changes. 
They point to the driveins as evi- 
dence how a family wil motor, en 
masse, to the outdoor cinemas. 
There is threat again, of exhibitors 
going into production. Meantime, 
the situation has opened more 
playing time for foreign imports, 
With result that Italy today is pro- 
ducing as many pix,. as Hollywood, 

CinemaScope Started A ^ 
Flood of Widescreen Fix 

CinemaScope resulted in ^l e 
Screen Producers’ Guild present- 
ing its “Milestone Award” to Dai- 
ry F* Zanuck for his productions of 
“The Robe” and “How to Marry, a 
Millionaire.” Jack L. Worrier, 
with whom Zanuck first start ed f as 
studio production head (Hal Wallis 
is another WB studio alumnus), 
saluted Zanuck and Spyros Skou- 
ras for their courage in pioneering 

(Continued On page 59) 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 



Show Biz ’53-Wotta Year! 

- Continued from page 58 

rscooe. Incidentally, WB P>ans 16 

pi l l m C ,ki n sever™' in U CS an The q in°- 
Jlry has earmarked 50-65 product 
uons in 1954. in the anamorphic 
lfeiis system. . » > 

••The Kobe” may be heading fqr 
a $20,000,000 (or bigger) domestic, 

S and Canada) , gross which, if 
would match .or better 
‘•Gone With the Wind,” the record, 
holder with $26,000;000. Cecil -B. 
neMillc’s “The Greatest Show On 
Farth” 1 1952) is credited With a 
*12 800,000 take,' Metro's .“Quo 
with' ^10,500,000, -‘Best 
Years of Qur Lives” With 10,- 
400 000, and "Duel in the Sun” 
With $10,000,000. (D. W, Griffith’s 
“Birth of a Nation,” because of its 
original states* rights seling and 
diversified exhibition, is . unbffi- 
cialy credited with being perhaps 
No. 1 alltime grosser, with a $40,- 
000,000 take). ; ' / 

Current product shortage has 
prompted Samuel Goldwyn reissu- 
ing “Best Years” in 1954 arid 
Metro’s reviving “Gone With the 
Wind,” and others. Goldwyn ar- 
gues that if all major distributors 
reissue but one or two of their top 
pictures over the past 20 years, 
this would resolve film shortage in 
short order. s 

“The Robe” on its first Week at 
the Roxy, N.Y., established a world 
record gross for a film with $267,- 
000 net. The theatre’s previous top 
was with “Forever Amber” in 1947, 
at $1,80 top arid a stageshow, doing 
$180,000. “The Robe” dropped its 
stage show and played seven or 
more showings per day at $2.50 
and $3 top. 

As evidence that there is no ceil- 
ing on strong pictures was the 
gross of “From Here to Eternity,” 
which played almost concurrently 
with “The Robe” at the nearby 
Capitol Theatre on Broadway, and 
which garnered $172,000 on its first 
week. The peak mark at Radio 
City Music Hall is held by Metro’s 
“Ivanhoe” with $177,000 for the 
week ending Aug. 6, 1952. 

Among the Holly wood giants, 
Paramount and Columbia appear to 
be most actively ' grinding out films. 
With CinemaScope calling for fewer 
but costlier pix, Darryl F. Zanuck’s 
20th Century-Fox production line 
is limited to this type of picture, 
and the new keeper, of the B’s for 
the company Is a separate .setup 
with Leonard Goldstein and Zan- 
uck’s son-in-law, Robert F. Jacks,; 
ope rat i n g Panoramic Pictures. 
Metro plans 18 supers; the Warner 
Bros, lot increasingly is adding im- 
portant units, in the United Art- 
ists manner. UA, of course, has 
had a banner year with , its flock 
of indie releases, and is expanding 
its production bankrolling for new- 
er independents. Samuel Goldwyn 
J, s _ coHcentrating on a reissue of 
. ^ Years of Our Lives,” along 
. * skillful merchandising job 
on Hans Christian Andersen,” the 
Danny Kaye starrer. 

Howard Hughes Is Hit 
By Repeated Litigation 

Howard Hughes continues to be 

P er i°dic dissident stock- 
ho ders suits, even after the Ar- 

ahf u Gi ; an t”Haiph Stolkin snafu 
emS paced Ned Depinet in an 
consultant” ; position and 
■eciitfi* in James R. Grainger, ex- 

into tL Sa i e ^A Veepee of Republic. 
T p the RKO presidency; David 

bv G A e iK ne 4. an ? a syndicate headed 
SL Alb ? rt „ A - List bought out 

agcnipnt ” Theatres > and man- 
ent nvA 1 "’l, 11 continue under pres- 
u, xy So1 A - Schwartz. 
Cht?io? ei - Green first name 
to nn ~; in .2® i^ortive attempt 

maft?ffn S , et , 20th - F °x’s incumbent 
fas a 5- Cmen 1 t und ®r Spyros Skou- 

logai]v anU A Ck ^ e V al ” wa S T ^wsted 

resminrr A?ld i\ course, with the 
tlie ro °* CinemaScope 

vation. ^ -t much area for aggra- 

'"to 'colutohfs D- nt , 0f Jerl,y Wald 
lion umbla Pictures as produc- 

icd ft* lot ’ s activity 

''FYoivi rr«£ P ? d «. y t! ? e smash o£ 

Jost-rol t °w rnlt £ and * he 

Plus ihn r! j --Sadie Thompson,” 

ford s ; . ler dy T?S lday ' Pater Law - 
You.” 1 r ’ • Sh °nld Happen to 

Rackmii 33 Re , cords ’ Milton R. 

Pietro Ving lnt ? tb ® Univer- 

(Nate) BinmL presideb cy, N. J, 

c ^irmaht;hi 1 ^ ber ^i tbe b °ard 

tapper Alfred E d ® sales 

eeutive a ^- Daff . became ex- 

companv St P W ent When the 
$5,000 a ? at William- Goetz’s 
a week was too rich for 

their exchequer his longtime aide, 
Ed Muhl, became the studio head; 
Goetz, now in independent produc 
tlon, has long been the tojvsalaried 
studio executive and refused to 
take a cut. This figure tops even 
Harry Cohn, the lone company 
president who is also a production 
chief, at Columbia; Metro’s Dore 
Schary; 20th’s Darryl Zanuck; or 
the Warner Bros.’ Jack L. Warner. 

After WB’s abortive move, to sell 
out its control to Louis R. Lurie 
two years ago, Jack Warner 
jumped quickly on the 3-D (Natu- 
ral Vision) bandwagon with 
“House of Wax”; then engaged in 
his own concept of the Warner- 
Scppe ( nee Warner-SuperScope ) , 
and finally decided to utilize the 
Skouras-Zanuck CinemaScope. 

The Rise of Hi-Fi As 
Phonograph Refinement 

After the recording industry cele- 
brated its 75th anniversary (since 
Thpmas A. Edison first spoke “Mary 
had a little lamb” on a piece of 
tinfoil) RCA Victor celebrated the 
golden jubilee of the founding of 
the Victor Talking Machine Co. 
by Eldridge R. Johnson, successor 
to Emile Berliner. Capitol Rec- 
ords' ,10th Anniversary witnessed 
a now peak in earnings. 

High-fidelity became a new ex- 
citement in the Industry, for which 
television gets credit. Television 
(F-M) sound is superior 

In recent semesters the record 
business had been stimulated by 
the battle of the speeds, and as 
the industry seems settled down to 
LPs (33rpm) and the 45 rpm pops 
(and also Extended Playing— -EP— 
records, with, the same large spin- 
dle hole), it is just a matter of 
time until 78 rpm speeds become 
obsolescent. However, there are 
still 16, 000*, 000 record players with 
The 78 turntable to be serviced; but 
the; 8,000,000 new players, with “all 
three speeds,” account for the bulk 
of the new record sales. 

With television, the public be- 
came sound conscious. The 45s 
and LPs have it “in the groove” 
but the average machine didn’t 
bring it out to its fullest 12,000- 
15,000 megacycle performance. 
The hi-fi addict started building 
his own equipment, whereupon the 
industry decided to mass-market 
already assembled hi-fi machines. 

Tomorrow’s Shape Seen 
In Sarnoff s Color-on-Tape 

High on the technological hit pa- 
rade is the miraculous-on-tape, 
both in color and black-and-white. 
Bing Crosby’s research enterprise 
on the Coast, along with the Min- 
nesota. Mining & Mfg. Co. and 
others, has been experimenting 
with video, tape, akin to ordinary 
sound recording on tape.. Finally, 
David Sarnoff, board chairman of 
RCA and NBC startled Hollywood 
-—film, radio and video showmen 
alike — with RCA’s new colored TV 
on tape. When refined, its poten- 
tials for home and theatre and 
filih production usages are stagger- 
ing in their horizons. The cost 
factor saving may even prove a 
boon to the picture business. 1 It 
could cut costs for film production, 
and thus permit cutting admission 
prices and resuscitate the theatre 
b. o. 

It could have salutary effect on 
commercial TV (as is) because of 
future cost savings. As the excess 
profits taxes on big business come 
off, there is a good chance that 
many big sponsors will go off the 
air. As it is/ TV runs the risk of 
pricing itself out of business. 

Television Film industry 
Surged Ahead in 1953 

Meantime, the television film as- 
pects are on the march. Vidpjx 
(films for video) loom as a devel- 
oping potential as more TV sta- 
tions open. There are 134 on the 
air as of now; the horizons are 
for 2,000 licensees. 

Television film development may 
determine Hollywood’s future as 
the production capital of TV. Cur- 
rently New York remains impor- 
tant as the program origination 
point, just as it is the economic 
capital. Latter has always been 
true, because the "money is in the 
east — the, agencies* sponsors, riian- 

'Subscription’ Television 
Occupies Trade Attention 

Subscription . TV is the new in- 
tra-trade conversation pieces 

The threat of TV pricing itself 

One of the healthiest signs of 
the times I have noticed in the past 
year is that, with every announce-? 
ment from the film companies, re 

their forth- 
coming prod- 
uct, there is 
always a men- 
tlon that, 
“With the 
forthc o mi n g 
new product, 
there will be a 
heavier em- 
phasis on tele- 
vision arid ra- 
dio exploita- 
tion.” A year 
ago such State- 

Terry Turner 

ments would have been strictly 
taboo, and, such an attitude at this 
date reveals the fact that even the 
infrequent application of television 
and radio as an aid to ticket sell- 
ing in motion picture theatres has 
been effective and is being recog- 

After working in this direction 
for four major companies during 
the past year, I have found the re- 
sults tO have been most decisive in 
the majority of cases, and spotty 
iri others. This depends solely 
upon the pictures selected and the 
amount of saturation given them. 

I think the. great majority of ex- 
hibitors have found that a televi- 
sion campaign ahead of their play- 
date has materially boosted box- 
off ice receipts. Needless to say 
they like that kind of a campaign 
and many of the distributors have 
actively used the campaign to se- 
cure a large number of dates in 
the given area. But, alas and 
alack, it is here that the coopera- 
tion between the distributor and 
exhibitor ends. The exhibitor ex- 
pects the distributor to carry the 
full load. If results are big but 
not record-breaking the distributor 
in turn cries, “Too expensive.” 

I sometimes wonder when and if 
ever the distributor and exhibitor 
will get together and, say, “We have 
a good thing here. The results are 
not blurbs and tear sheets, but posi- 
tive and direct cash sales at our 


mutual boxoffice, which feeds us 
both. Let’s get down, to a sharing 
basis and use this medium for all 
it is worth.” 

| Protection Obstacle | 

It might even continue to be said 
that “this business of 14 arid 28- 
day protection clauses in playing a 
picture under the TV plan belongs 
to the silent picture era. What is 
the sense of a smash TV campaign 
for a lone, first run in the down- 
town area of a city when 40 good 
grossing keys are right within the 
primary orbit of , that TV station 
and get the Campaign with just 
as strong an impact as the lone 
downtown theatre? Isn’t it foolish 
for us to suppose that you get a 
customer living 50 miles away from 
the downtown theatre, to rush out 
of his house, drive his family those 
50 miles, put up cash for parking 
downtown (if he cari find it) and 
perhaps get a baby sitter and run 
up a little more expense? Isn’t it 
more reasonable for us to suppose 
that the same customer will get 
off of his beam to go tWo blocks, 
and take his entire family to see 
the picture, because it is the same 
picture that is being shown 50 
miles away? Why waste a cam- 
paign, because people forget all 
too quickly, arid in 14 Or 28 days 
your campaign is just a wisp of a ! 

Television, it must be admitted, 
has changed our ways of life and j 
I think anypne would be a dunce 1 
to deny that it is in more direct 1 
competition with the inotion pic- 
ture business than any other form 
of amusement. If it has changed 
jour news-getting habits, as news- 
papers will admit; our styles, and | 
even our thinking, why can't we \ 
in our business change some of j 
our method, which seemed to be | 
outmoded when we attempt to use 
television to our advantage. 

I happen to know that the mar 
jors have Changed their course of ; 
thinking over the past year. There ’ 
were mistakes. Let’s list some of ; 
these mistakes than can minimize j 
the effectiveness of television to ! 
boost sales in motion picture thea- 
tres.' . 

1. Pick the tetong picture 

2. Pick the right picture and ;. 
make . the wrong material to ex- 
ploit it. 

3. Pick the right picture, have ! 
the. right material, and. then buy 
insufficient time to get your story 
over to the public. 

4. Pick the right picture, have 
the right material and sufficient 
money for an adequate campaign, 
and end up with only a few dates; 
Then the expense argument comes 

5. Pick the right picture, have 
the- right - material, the 

or 20 more stations are ready to 
open. Brother, they, ain’t growing, 
they’re breeding. ;.' 

I am more convinced than ever 
before that television (as a solid 
sales instrument and not as an ex- 
ploitation gimmick) is here to 
stay. Most of the majors are think- 
ing along the same lines and 
Goodness knows, the tops in the 
advertising departments,— Howard 
Dietz, Charlie Eirifeld, Mort Bluriv- 
enstock and Jerry Pickman have 
been wide open for a "look see” 
ar.d their executives, Bill Brum- 
berg, Rodney Bush and John Nor- 
chp and Sid Blumenstock, Sid 
Mesibov, Bob Montgomery and all 
their assistants, have aided riie in 
every posrible way to get the most . 
out of it. "it sure has been a great 
experience working with riien who 
in the p^t have only been, a 
“Hello” name to me and 1 hope 
they’ll want me back sometime, 
l’il be in there pitching, anyway. 

I estimate you can run two cam- 
paigns a month or 24 a year pro- 
viding the companies pick their 
pictures and release dates so as 
not to be fighting each other. 

One last thought, but it is high- 
ly important./ You cannot buy TV 
time for pictures as you would 
buy it for cigarettes, beer or cos- 
metics. I am of the opinion that . 
you must buy across the. board, and 
as often as you possibly cari within 
a period of 10 days prior to your 
opening date. Where cigarettes, 
beer and cosmetics are destined 
for a very definite market, pic- 
tures are for the entire family 
from Junior to Grandpop. 

Now to explain how this televi- 
sion technique gets them out of 
the living room, let’s take the 
classic reply made by one of the 
baseball immortals, Willie Keeler, 
who when asked to explain his ter- 
rific batting average replied. “I hit 
’em where they ain’t.” Well, if 
Willie had to explain some of the 
terrific grosses where the tele- 
vision technique was used, he 
would undoubtedly reply; 

“li hits 'em where they is.” 

out of business has Some agencies 
doing some wishful-thinking that 
“tollvision may also bail out the 
sponsors.” This is a vacuous phil- 
osphy because nobody will pay a 
fee for a commercially sponsored 
show. People like RCA’s David 
Sarnoff and Frank M. Folsom are 
skeptical because (1), the public’s 
purchase of a TV set is tanta- 
mount to a franchise for ‘free’ en- 
tertainment; and costs too much in 
this day and age to collect. Fur- 
thermore, Sarnoff’s basic conten- , . . 

tion has been that it’s too easy to : amount of money, and then allow 
gimmick the scrambled pictures at ! your 14 and 28 day protection 
home, and thus a freeloading au- j clauses to murder you. They cry 

j ' ..... I tho ,i W/> rliirf nnnn in 

dience with some savvy electronic 
bootlegger in each household 
would be unscrambling the pic- 
tures and getting a free ride. 

Closed-circuit theatre television 
of sports events have created a 
certain amount of excitement. A 
proposal by a Miami Beach circuit 
of 10 hotels for a TV pickup to 
show first run pictures on the 
premises is part of the general 
thinking ii^ relation to tollvision. 

CBS board chairman William S. 

Paley, when receiving the annual 
Poor Ridhard Club award in Phil- 
adelphia, said among other things 
that TV already has long proved 
that long election campaigns are 
outmoded. Traditional stump- 
spceching is a thing of the past. 

One giant hookup gets to more 
people than weeks of junketing 
from town to town, state to state. 

Death Closes Out C areers 
Of Showbiz Personages 

Picture business show biz deaths 
of 1953 included Louis D. Frohlick And when I say the exhibitor 
(Schwartz' &), Robert G. Vignola. ' should share with the distributor 
Herman J. Mankiewicz, Lewis 1 1 don’t mean equal dollar for dol- 
Stonc, A. Pam Blumenihal, Arthur ' lar, but a proportionate share just 
Caesar, Williarri Farnum, Albert ' as he might share co-operative 
Ferinyvessy, Francis Ford, Michael ; newspaper advertising. 

Gore, M. A. Schlesinger, M. B. Now let’s look on the other side 
Shanberg, Harry Sherman, Jacob , of the fence, the Television side, 

the inevitable, “We did good in 
first run and died in the subse- 
quent runs.” The truth would be 
“ I'm doing good and running well ! 
ahead of the pack, but cut my - 
throat at the finish line.” 

6. Pick a picture that already 
has a tremendous production cost j 
on it, and try to do the job for pea- 

7. Pick a picture because you 
know it will be hard to sell t 
straight, and bemoan the fact that j 
the customers, despite yoitr many ! 
dates, think the same as you do | 
about the picture, to wit: “ It 
stinks .” 

I have found that exhibitors are 
more willing to pull out and rear- 
range dates with an eye on a pro- 
posed television campaign that a : 
distributor. With a major, it is ; 
definitely true that it does disrupt 
j the regular flow of his product, 
but that difficulty cbuld be wiped 
out by planning the year before, 

J Cost Sharing ~ j 

H. Lubin, Chick Lewis/ Henry 
Herzbruri, Herbert Rawlinson, 

vi here I have been hibernating the 
past year and liking it. I have 

David Palfreyman, Harry L. Nace, i been arranging time for four ma- 
Roland Young, Irving Reis and I jors all over the U.S.A. and it 
Gus Schaefer-^and on Christmas ! seems before I finish one chart en- 
Day, Lee Shubert. compassing the entire country, 10 

There’s No Sub 

S Continued from page 12. ss 

parage CinemaScope or any of the 
other innovations that are inject- 
ing new life into the business. We, 
all of us, are deeply indebted to 
those who developed CinefnaScope 
and they have, or should have, the 
best wishes of the exhibitors. It is 
apparent that the companies pro- 
ducing the CinemaScope are striv- 
ing to find subject-matter worthy 
of the medium. The others are 
planning pictures that will hold 
their own in. competition _ with 
CinemaScope productions. The 
product announcements for 1954, 
while disappointing in quantity, 
hold promise of a number of out- 
standing productions. 

If only T bad assurance that this 
improved product would be made 
available to all theatres in all parts 
of the country ior exhibition in 
whatever medium they are 
equipped for and on whatever 
equipment they can afford, I would 
face the new year not only with 
hope but with confidence. 

The big “if” for 1954, is whether 
these new devices, especially 
CinemaScope, are going to be used 
for the benefit of the entire indus- 
try or whether they will be em- 
ployed as weapons for the destruc- 
tion of the smaller exhibitors. 
Although the film companies are 
maintaining silence, I still feel that 
good sense will p re vail a rid t h a t 
the doubts arid anxieties that assail 
us will be banished when the re- 
sponsible heads of the industry 
come to realize the enormity of the 
havoc which present policies would 

With the fine new product made 
available to all, With the encourage- 
ment of the reduction in the admis- 
sions tax which the President has 
promised and which daily grows 
more certain, It seems to me that 
the industry should not only re- 
cover, but should surge forward 
in 1954. Economic compatibility 
between the several industry 
branches can be achieved when 
present anxieties are dissipated, 
confidence is restored and all join 
together im a grand crusade to 
bring the people back into the 

Farty -eighth 


Wednesday* January 6, 1954 


.?** % 



Greatest Prison Drama 
of Modern Times! 

Wafteit Viamaetis 



m.,;i .m w m .. ^ 

C O 

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Triple-Star, Triple-Fun 
Romantic Delight! 



6 * 

Mighty Adventure -in 




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B T 



■>£«*. : 




To vo* Eft 

B T 

w>*h Vb«r ALLIED ARTISTS Branch Manager 
in the National Championship Sales Drive* •• 

F orty-eightfi 



For the: past five years the rate 
n{ picture production has been de- 
creasing* During this last year 
producers adopted a “wait and see” 
hecause of the new tech. 

and sound 

policy because 
niques in projection 
and. as a result, the general de- 
crease in production appeared to be 
accelerated. However, many of 
the problems faced by producers 

lave been clarified recently and 

' me of those who have .been wait- 
ing have announced some increase 
n their production plans. We are 
urging producers and distributors 
to hesitate no longer and step up 
their production plans substan- 

When it comes to a choice be- 
tween quantity of product and 
nualitv of product, we must choose 
ouality and it is our firm belief 
that the addition of substantial 
star value and product , quality will 
result in more playing time for pic- 
tures. As we said above, the past 
five years has seen a steady de- 
crease in production arid our com- 
• plaint as to the shortages, has been 
directed mostly to the shortage of 
. quality. 

Whether or not CinemaScope is 
applicable to all pictures has been 
a subject for debate for some time 
now. Our feeling is that Cinema- 
Scope should be used only for 
spectacle productions. In our 
opinion, aspect ratio (CinemaScope 
or any other) is only a frame for 
any picture, and each picture 
should be given a frame most 
suited to its story and locale. 

There is no question but that 
the all-purpose screens and ste- 
reophonic sound installations are 
very costly, although, in. the case 
of many theatres, it may be justi- 
fied by the hypoed business poten- 
tial. However, there are many 
other theatres about Which this 
may not be true, because of local 
preferences, inability to equip or 
for other good reasons. How- 
ever, one thing is clear and that 
is that the decision as to whether 
tlie increased business potential 
would justify these expensive in- 
stallations must be made by thea- 
tre and each theatre must stand on 
its own factors. We have urged 
and . are ' continuing to urge pro- 
ducers and distributors to release 
duplicate versions of their Cine- 
maScope films so that the du- 
plicate can be shown in any aspect 
ratio and with Or without stereo^ 
phqnic sound. If this is not done, 
w,e will find a substantial number 
of theatres faced with an acute 
shortage of product. Of course, 
theatres which cannot convert will 
not have the appeal of the theatres 
which do convert, but certainly 
that i$ not reason enough to deny 
such theatres an even flow of prod- 

_ . There is a . school of thought in 
our industry with the theory that 
Ihe new developments which have 
come upon us will result in a 
smaller industry,” i.e., fewer the- 
atres. We do not subscribe to this 
theory and we feel that the public 
"ill be the final judge of this. 

. There are some who say that 
he widescreen era will result in a 
topsided accent on spectacle. We 
Jio not, for one moment, believe 

J;n' * ee * th at our producers 
ill continue, as they have always, 

wam rreCtly ^ udge wba t the public 

finales Have had.: It Is true that adf- 
mission prices havd been, increased 
in many areas of the country and 
some have , said that, because . of 
this,; the motion picture no longer 
caters to the masses. However, 'it 
must be remembered that there are 

many areas th^t have held the 
same admission prices through the 
years and that if the increases that 
have been invoked are studied, it 
will be found that the ratio of in- 
crease is far less thari the increases 
that have been invoked on any 
other commodity. Furthermore; 
we are convinced that the in- 
creased . admission price does not 
keep audiences -away. Our patrons 
will pay for. what they want to see 
and will, not attend, no matter, how 
low the. admission price, if the at- 
traction is not. to their liking. 

3-D Not Dead 

bniJ 16 - s Mhl ec t of 3-D continues to 
tn %****• The public flocked 
th»!r ^ Pictures to show 

Hn«m lntei l 5 .* 1 A 11 fhis ( new medium. 
spu ® v , er » this interest waned when 
■'iiitn 1 ? i poor . Pictures were rushed 
thi« ® ® ase in order to cash in on 
:S J Popuiari tty quickly. In- effect, 
laid t L, most hiiled ‘‘the goose that 
Iv th^ 6 gol ,dcn egg.” Fortunate- 
• : Ki„ ^sults we have seen with 
Mill c? e kate ” an <* “Hondo*' and 
Thomnc 6 ’ m°u doubt * with “Sadie 
‘ l M° ne y From Home*' 

U d annp? for Mwrder,*’ makes 
chanS that 3 ‘ D still has a 
in that m Can get good Pictures 
3-D mHw edlu, ??‘ T hc market for 
an a P va n^f- 4 WI 1 resolve itself into 
<iozen n^ ,l X ® f Chips' a ha'f- 
■W<f do <1 nSi lty 3 ’ D pict ures per year. 
c °old°nnr *.? lean tba * the demand 
they !,v.p „ aCl commodate a dozen if 

mean tlnMh* p ! ctures * but We do 
ever t there, is no room whatso- 
101 Poor. ones. 

d usu-v 1 W r t h ^ ontrov e r Sy in our jn- 
that- in! rp? qu . estl on of the effect 

. - s in admission price to most commodities. 

Par Theatres Prez For 
Dupe Versions of CS Pix 


One . of . the most serious prob- 
lems facing exhibition today is the 
unmistakeable signs of decrease in 
production which, if continued, 
can slow the flow of product to a 
dangerous point. I agree that it is 
correct to sacrifice quantity for 
hoped-for quality and of course, it 
is possible that fewer pictures; but 
bigger ones, could keep theatres 
going via extended runs. But we 
do also need a steadier flow of 

Another serious problem is the 
equipment problem. While it is 
true that the large investment re- 
quired by an all-purpose screen and 
stereo sourid installation may be : 
justified by the hypoed: business 
potential in the case of many thea- 
tres, this^Tiiay not be true with 
respect to many others and it is 
now clear that the determination 
as to whether these installations 
be made must be considered thea- 
tre by theatre, each one standing 
on its own. 

There are still differences of 
opinion as to whether CinemaScope 
is applicable to all pictures. In my 
opinion it is not. I feel that Cin- 
emaScope will be out of proportion 
if used as the medium for the inti- 
mate type of story. 

We believe and have urged that 
distributors should release dupli- 
cate versions of their CinemaScope 
films so that the duplicate can be 
shown in any aspect ratio other 
than CinemaScope, and with or 
without stereophonic sound. Only 
in this way can we hope to keep in 
business those theatres which can- 
not, because of economic inability, 
local taste and. other good reasons, 
convert completely to Cinema- 
Scope. These theatres which cannot 
convert may not have the appeal 
of the more fortunate theatres 
which do convert, but the flow of 
product should definitely not be 
denied to them. 

" 3-D opened on a tremendous 
popularity wave which waned as 
the number of poor pictures in 3-D 
appeared. These poor pictures prac- 
tically killed 3-D and those who 
made and released them, were re- 
sponsible for the near death. How- 
ever, it is encouraging to note the 
results being obtained by the better 
3-D productions like “Kiss Me 
Kate” and “Hondo” and, no doubt, 
these good results will be repeated 
with “Sadie Thompson,” “Money 
From Home” and “Dial M for 
Murder,” It appears therefore that 
3-D still has a chance; if .the pic- 
tures made in that medium are 
good ones. Certainly a good single 
projection 3-D system would help 
fqrther and,. of course, elimination 
of the necessity for glasses would 
clinch the comeback. 

Many people have claimed that 
the motion picture is no longer 
entertainment for; the masses in 
view of boosts iri admission scales 
in some areas. I disagree with this 
most strongly. In the first place, 
experience, has taught us that the 
increased admission; price is not 
what deters theatre attendance. If 
the attraction is a good one, the 
theatre can be filled regardless of 
the increase. Furthermore, despite 
the increase iri admission price, the 
motion picture still stands as the 
“mass entertainment.” A study of 
the general increase in admission 
prices in motion picture theatres 
should show that the percentage 
of this increase is far less than the 
percentage of Increase with respect 

L , Nashville, Tefin. 

‘It has been estimated that the 
maximum domestic audience for- a 
popular film numbers about 25’- 
000,000 people. By popular film l 

mean, any pic- 
ture whose 
chief 'appeal is 
in story value 
or shock value 
and which has 
no particular 
intellecual or 
esthetic, ap- 
peal. It is al- 
most impossi- 
ble for a pic- 
ture . in . this 
cat e g ory to 
c a p t u re a 

Alfred Starr 

larger audience. A few notable ex- 
ceptions may be “Samson and 
Delilah,” '‘Quo Vadis,” and “The 
Robe,” - which appeal not only to 
the average theatregoer, but also; 
to church groups arid others who 
rarely go to the theatre. That par* 
ticular group is not the “lost” 
audience we have heard so much 
about. Those additional, people who 
go to see these special pictures 
were never regular theatregoers 
and never will be. 

The lost audience is that audi- 
ence of mature, adult, sophisti- 
cated people who read good books 
and magazines, -who attend lectures 
and concerts, who are politically 
and socially aware and alert. They 
are not readers of the pulp maga- 
zines, they are not avid radio or 
television fans, and they, do not see 
motion pictures very often. They 
do riot go to the moviesNbecause 
their experierice has been largely 
unhappy. They do not read the 
motion picture fan magazines and 
they have little time or opportun- 
ity for reading intelligent film 
reviews. . They have no way of 
knowing, for example, that “High 
Noon” and “Shane” are not just 
ordinary westerns. Hence on those 
rare occasions when they decide 
to take in a picture they turn in a 
sort of desperation to the amuse- 
riient page of the newspaper for a 
suggestion. And what they see 
there is usually so stereotyped or 
so reminiscent of the last dull pic- 
ture they saw that iri the end they 
decide to call on a neighbor in- 

Audience Is 


tern of adequate communication 
with its potential audit nee. 

' 'Hollywood has not only under- 
estimated the intelligence of the 
general population by aiming at 
this -.'lowest level, presumably on 
the theory that dt embraces the 
largest numerical gfoup in the total 
population, but what is worse, it 
consistently underestimates the in- 
telligence of-; its own established 
audience The inevitable result has 
beeri (1), a shocking lack of devel- 
opment in the techniques of motion 
picture art; arid (2) an almost com- 
plete, alienation of the people who 
are most capable of appreciating 
those techniques. 

The art of the motion picture; is 
first of all a visual art. The audi- 
ence must have eyes and must be 
able to use them. If a picture is at 
all worth looking at, then the eyes 
of the audience must be alert to 
absorb not only its pictorial values 
and color or lighting values, but 
also_the story line as it is ex- 
pressed in visual terms. It might 
be presumed that the audience, 
after three decades of picturegoing, 
is trained in seeing pictures, hut it 
is obvious that most filmmakers 
take nothing of the sort for 
granted. It is, only a mild exaggera- 
tion to say that the average film is 
aimed at an audience presumably 
blind. . 


The Foreign Idea 

Another 25,000,000 Lost 


What is the size of this lost audi- 
ence? It is a safe guess to say that 
it consists of another 25.000,000 
people! They are 25,000.000 people 
who like and need entertainment 
and who, by and large, are well 
able to pay for it. These people 
have been literally , driven out of the 
motion picture theatre by the in- 
dustry’s insistence on aiming most 
of its product at the lowest level, 
and by its failure to devise a sys- 

An episode in the Italian picture 
“Shoe Shine” is a case in point. 
One important sequence shows a 
gang of urban ragamuffins setting 
out to acquire a broken down dray- 
horse. No attempt is made to ex- 
plain just why a group of city boys 
want a horse, because no explana- 
tion is necessary; Vet it is easy to 
imagine a Hollywood director in- 
serting a long scene at this point 
showing the natural love of a boy 
for a horse (or for any other ani- 
mal) and the natural desire of a 
city-bound boy for rural surround- 
ings. Such an interpolation, in the 
hands of a Hollywood director, 
might easily be as long and as ten- 
derly sentimental as the entire film 
of “The Yearling." And all of it 
would be superfluous. 

But it is too easy to cite ex- 
amples of the kind of film making 
that drove the lost audience out of 
the theatre and that keeps them 
out. This is merely destructive 
criticism at its worst. The writer, 
being an exhibitor, has no quarrel 
whatever with the quality of pic- 
tures that capture the attention of 
the great mass of people who still 
regularly attend the movies. The 
question, under consideration here 
is whether or riot it is possible for 
the motion picture industry to re- 
capture and bring back into the- 
atres that lost audience of millions 
of people. 

Small Towns and Nabes Need 
A Break on Product & Terms 



It’s about time the producers 
and distributors of this business 
realize they must adopt a separate 
sales policy to cover the small 
town and' neighborhood theatres, 
whose problems are vastly differ- 
ent from those of the key cities. 

In fact it’s past time; for many 
small operators whose houses are 
already dark. But it is not too 
late for the industry to help keep 
alive thousands of other small 
town exhibitors who are sure to 
disappear— unless the. sales de- 
partments do something about 

Today’s sales pattern as created 
by the various major companies is 
keyed exclusively to the first-runs 
arid lacks consideration for the 
smaller situations. 

Take CinemaScope, for example. 
Costs of installation are beyond 
the means of the average small 
operator at this time, and while 
it’s true that this expense is bound 
to be reduced, many small the- 
: atres can go out of business in the 
! interim. 

! And when a CinemaScope pro- 
duction or a “From Here to 
Eternity” hits the smaller towns, 
the distributor’s demands . for 
lengthy playing time and advanced 
prices will drain the town of all its 
money on these engagements, with 
the exhibitor paying such fancy 
film rentals that he winds up with 
little ; or nothing to show on his 
] books at the end of the month. 

Sure, it’s good to see great pic- 
tures doing business at the big 
houses — that’s healthy for every- 
body. But it also means that the 
lesser feature, which might have 
got by nervously as an “A” one 
year ago, falls off to nothing today. 
Already shortage of product has 
hit the neighborhood theatre man 
hardest, because he has been com- 
pelled to book two “A” pictures 
together, and there just isn’t 
enough production to carry on this 

Obviously the small town ex- 
hibitor does not compete with the 
metropolitan .. houses, and he’s 
pleased to see holdouts at the de- 
luxers. He does not ask any change 
in the big cities, but he does ask 
a fair chance to get his share of 
the returns on a boxoffice attrac- 
tion. This means that some of the 
top-level sales thinking must be 
devoted to understanding and help- 
ing to solve the small operator’s 

It must be remembered that the 
neighborhood and small town the- 
atres cannot hope to approach the 
tremendous grosses that larger 
houses can roll up in the heavy 
metropolitan areas. Also; the un- 
even ratio of overhead works to 
the disadvantage of the smaller 
theatres. Despite all his problems, 
the small town exhibitor has served 
this industry well for many years, 
and it’s time to give him the break 
he neefis to stay in business. 

pictures ...«f 

Since this problem Is of more 
vital importance to exhibitors than 
it is to producers, it is fundamcn- 
tally a problem for the exhibitor to 
solve. And solve it he must if he 
is to remain in the picture busi- 
ness. While his audience seems to 
be more steady and dependable 
than the lost audience could ever 
be, they are actually more fickle 
and more easily won over to new 
entertainment vehicles like televi- 
sion- They will iri fact desert the 
theatre for. any novelty. And 
many of them .will never come 

The exhibitor should never cease 
his efforts to bring back and de- 
velop the lost audience. He should 
constantly try to bring adult en- 
tertainment to adults. He might 
even arrange special showings for 
small groups as a public service. 
If he is. too busy or if he is unable 
to decide which pictures should be 
shown in such a series he can al- 
ways find a member of the local in- 
telligentsia whose advice can be 
safely followed. Such a public 
service can easily develop into per- 
sonal benefit. A very effective de- 
vice is the acquisition of a list of 
possible patrons who can be cir- 
cularized by postcard announce- 
ment of each picture. 

■ Showmans hip 

Another solution lies in the high- 
ly .successful “Curtain at 8;40” 
series Which Walter Reade Jr. haS 
pioneered, in several of his the- 
atres. This Series is aimed at 
bringing the lost audience into a 
conventional theatre on one night 
each week for a carefully selected 
series of pictures that have special 
appeal. This sort of experiment 
reaches the height of success when 
large numbers of the special audi- 
ence, whether through habit or 
through, renewed pleasure on see- 
ing a fine motion picture, come 
back as regular patrons to see the 
many excellent pictures that are 
constantly available, if they will 
only take the trouble to identify 

In all fairness it iriust be ad- 
mitted that the distributors do 
make serious attempts to reach the 
lost audience whenever they. are 
confronted with the problem of 
| marketing a special picture. Their 
chief complaint, not without some 
justification, is that the average ex- 
hibitor presents a picture like “Ro- 
man Holiday” or “Lili“ to his audi- 
ence in exactly the same manner 
that he presents a Roy Rogers pic- 
ture. But much can be done by 
the distributor, and more particu- 
larly by the producer. 

He can first of all credit his au- 
dience with riiore subtlety and spn- 
sivity than he has heretofore as- 
sumed. He can help people ap- 
preciate good pictures by making 
them in such a way as to compel 
those people to be alert and vyatch- 
ful while looking at them. He. can 
design his product so as to appeal 
to the . millions of people every - 
; where in this country who love the 
i theatre in any form, who support 
i countless little theatres, who flock 
to concerts and to bal T et and to 
opera and to lectures of all' kinds. 
That audience need not be perma- 
nently lost to motion pictures. 


Continuing analysis of 3-D ver- 
sus 2-D in relation to Metro's “Kiss 
Me Kate” gives the depth version 
the edge at the b.o. 

With boxoffice figures available 
from 44 2-D situations arid 93 3-D 
engagements, M-G reports that 3-D 
is ahead by 11.9fc. Eastern fans, 
according to Metro, are prime 3-D 
addicts, with playdates in that area 
putting the depth version 19°o 
ahead. In the south-southeastern 
division, 3-D is ahead 16.9 c r. In 
the central midwest, and west 
coast territories, the difference is 
9 % in favor of 3-D. 

:CSope Arrives in Singapore 


CinemaScope came to Singapore 
this month when a demonstration 
was held at the new air-condi- 
tioned cineriia, the Qdeon. 

Nearly 800 officials attended the 
demonstration. The CinemaScope 
screen Was specially flown out to 
Singapore, from New York. 

C’Scope will be introduced to the 
public at the Odeon as a year-end 
pic, the pfeem production being 
“The Robe’’ (20th). 

Forty •eighth 





Wednesday, January 6, l9j| 





Gripping Adventure and Suspense! 

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FP-Can. Topper’s 





J. J. Fltzglbbons 


Proper playing time for quality 
product will encourage production 
fi at should ensure a steady flow 
of product. This effort will bring 
product also 
that will help 
to fill 
playing 11 

needed by the 
cated m the 
suburban and 
smaller towns. 

There is no. 
good sound 
reason why 
theatre, men 
should not re- 
activate the • . . 

ideas that were successful in the 
promotion of First National and 
undertake to have product made 
that would give them a steadier 

I just don’t believe the literal 
statement that ‘‘fewer pictures but 
bigger ones’* can keep theatres go- 
ing by extended runs. It may keep 
a certain limited number of the- 
atres going but the business as we 
know it today woUld disappear. 
The success of this business, is 
fundamentally dependent upon 
mass entertainment at admission 
prices that can be patterned to fit 
any pocketbook. I mean pocket-- 
book literally— cash on hand. 

Undoubtedly if there is a suffi- 
cient demand there will be a suffi- 
cient supply of the various types 
of equipment for screen and sound 
installation that will be produced 
at a cost within the range of the 
smaller theatre and small town 
exhibitor. Obviously, not to take 
advantage of the potential in 
stereophonic sound as we know it 
is to reduce an important factor in 
the improvement of the type of 
entertainment we are 1 selling. 

The ambition of every exhibitor 
Is like the fellow who lived on the 
wrong side of the tracks, he wants 
to live on the hill in the big house 
and perhaps, because, .of this, we 
have neglected to recognize the 
importance of continuing to make 
thetype of entertainment we style 
"poor man’s entertainment.** Both 
i classes are needed to ensure and 
| encourage production and continue 
the interest, in our business. Just 
| as there are variations in the qjial- 
| ity of practically every other com-, 
modify or service that we buy, 

| there are still more people with 
less to spend than there are with 
more to spend for any service or 

Standards can be flexible, not 
necessarily static and a variation 
of processes of product is desir- 
able. 3D still has the? objections of 
the additional cost for glasses and 
the inconvenience of wearing 
glasses to overcome. However, spe- 
cial and unusual 3D pictures will 
unquestionably prove to be box- 
office successes. A single-projector 
3D system is not enbugh to revive. 
3D ev en tho ugh Ut- does improve 

projection and lessens the prob- 
ems of both the distributor and 
the exhibitor in handling. 

I do not think anyone can hon- 
</tly or rightfully answer the ques- 
tion as to whether or not an indus- 
■y is right in sacrificing quantity 
«?■» . pe<Wpr quality. -Quantity can 
5UU have elements of value. In 
p !? duc * n 0 quantity, supply is pro- 
itled for the smailer and subur- 
an rqp theatre and has merit suf- 
pnn« !° s ® tisf y a very large audi- 
m wh ? A ShouIci be able to buy at 
jydhm their budget. In the 
vo?f Uctl0n this comes the de? 
nppH Pn i tnt of Personnel and 
X d .u personaIities for the so- 
t'*.. to'P quality’* we hope for, 
nirt a ^ e possible the bigger and 
com in ? Xp ?" sl Y e operations* and to 
trv thH e * the intercst in °ur indus- 
oifr . 1S ” e(ided if we are to get 
avaiinte 1 ^ 0 ^ time and money 
e '"Main m ™t P “ Ple seeking “ iass 

soun< * is generally 
on There may be pictures 

not ran '! 1 stereophonic sound is 
quir ^ d - There are certainly 
iat it can ir 


■'•neim w'" du P licate Versions, of 
i nemaScope for at least a year 

c? •• 


o,n »^ope has given qur box- 
wiii be 'othet^' Possible there 

processes equally as 
not too 'rile? ^ynemaScope in the 
Scope ic d fA nt f ut ure. But Cinema- 
The a PP llca ble to all pix. 
bination if 1 ® of 3D was a com- 
tion and irres Ponsible produc- 

J Us t as irresponsible ex- to be just out? 

hibitor merchandising efforts to 
get a quick busk, completely ignor- 
ing the fact the motion picture 
theatre patron of today is selective 
and has many other choices of en- 
tertainment to select from as com- 
pared to the days when we could 
throw anything on the screen and 
just sell tickets, 

I do not favor a smaller indus- 
try; we favor a larger industry 
with more theatres. 

Don’t Kill Off Biz 

Continued from page ..?■ 

own— likewise it’s new and em- 
bryonic in its uncertainty as to the 
future. , 

Some have suggested that thea- 
tre men should Undertake produc- 
tion. In our opinion, this can only 
succeed on a franchise basis with 
fixed assurance of income to main- 
tain a supply. 

| Where’s That Mass ‘Appeal’ | 

At least two producers are cam- 
paigning for fewer and better pic- 
tures, in fewer houses. To this idea 
comes the challenge of the basic 
ingredient of the most profitable 
period of our existence— that time 
when the very “mass appeal’* of 
our programs made customers 
stand in line to see our offerings. 
Those days are gone. Producers 
have vied with each other either 
to copy or to outdo their competi- 
tors — and even though wages have 
mounted, other increasing costs 
have, limited customer amusement 
budget in proportion. In the mean- 
while the cost to the theatres cata- 
pulted and the scramble for prio- 
rity led to neglect of independent 
product. Successful westerns, the 
backbone of weekend programs, 
became deluxers. Gradually the 
trend practically forced abandon- 
ment of these low-budget, profit- 
producing popular pictures — with 
its consequent loss of devoted, low- 
er-income-bracket followers. This : 
was a tragedy.- - 

While ours is an artistry ap- 
proach to favor, we have failed to 
keep ourselves mindful of our ob- 
ligation to the varied tastes repre- 
sented by a public which cannot 
be segregated but rather demands 
that its individual tastes be catered 

To lose sight of this obligation 
can only spell danger to our fu- 
ture. The closing of the small the- 
atres will shrink a vast business 
into a decreasing entity of limited 
appeal which, no matter, how. im- 
portant to a few, cannot replace | 
the pleasurable hours that perhaps 
lesser art would offer the multi? 
tudes. It made possible those thea- 
tres that reach into the farthest 
recesses of bur world, with their 
messages of cheer, culture and 
education, that never before had 
existed for these people — and at a 
price they could afford to pay, 
twice a week, instead of on occa- 
sion, aS Many still do— I jedr~ 
with diminishing desire. 

It, is only natural that In time of 
distress men become jittery and 
over-anxious to solve a resurgent 
situation. The strain and uncer- 
tainty often prods men to find the 
answer by inventive exertion. 

The weird throes of picturedom 
with its 3D, Cinemascope, Ciner- 
ama, Stereophonic Sound — and all 
their digressions— seem to indicate 
the definite need for standardiza- 
tion of our new ideas. When and 
If these diversions prove them- 
selves— by trial and error— and a 
standard is accepted — then the rank 
and file will be back in business 
again. There must come a com- 
posite from this confusion. . 

Dwelling for a moment on 3D, 
one of the most prominent “novel- 
ty” appeals, which originated un- 
der handicap but which is showing 
signs of improvement, still inust 
overcome the need for. wearing of 
glasses. Entertainment comes 
through relaxation. 

Stereophonic sound, in some 
cases, may add to enjoyment and 
widescreen is strictly a matter of 
choice to an audience, but in itself 
does riot have the ingredient to re- 
store our prosperity. 

. Cinemascope is too demanding. 
To those who deal in millions a 
few thousand seem inconsequen- 
•tial, but to a prior exhibitor’s 
Widow, spending her husband’s life 
insurance t0 keep her theatre open, 
there 4nust be a more practical 
solution, than risking her all on 
an, as yet, unproven “stupendous 
and marvelous” way out, . Or is it 


Makes Good Pix Better 


The day Will never come when 
3-D will make a bad picture good — 
but it will make good pictures bet- 
ter. Originally, three-dimensional 
films captured the fancy of the 
public . because of their novelty. 
With lack of quality films and pub- 
lic discomfort because of uncom- 
fortable viewers, the popularity 
was* of necessity, shortlived. How 
long can an audience duck arrows 
or other missiles arid be expected 
to come back to the theatre? Our 
presentations ; sacrificed film con- 
tent to squeeze the gimrivick of 3?D 
—•for more than it was worth. The 
industry did not clothe 3-D ivith 
proper values for public acceptance 
in its haste to take advantage of 
the dimensional furore. And the 
less we say about the early glasses* 
the better. Our patrons let us know 
about that in no uncertain terms. 

In spite of all these handicaps, 
real progress is being made on all 
fronts. Double projection. is giving 
way to single film strip projection* 
eliminating the serious objection 
to which I referred. Third-dimen- 
sion had' taken sUch a nosedive that 
one does riot hear of added rental 
terms solely because a film is pro- 
duced in 3-D. . Better glasses are 
eliminating many, but n ot all, com- 
plaints; and better quality films 
may yet win back an audience. 

It is a struggle which \ve have 
created for ourselves. The public 
in many ' sections of the 'country 
already has been ■ conditioned 
against 3-D. So much so, that many 
theatres believe they increase their 
boxoffice potential: by advertising 
the playdate of a film in 2-D. 

It should be noted here that it 
is still unresolved in trade circles 
as to whether the public will Ulti- 
mately accept the proposition of 
viewing stereoscopic films through 
polarized glasses . . . even though 
the films and glasses are better. 
The proponents of 3-D, with 
glasses, are making a valiant effort 
to revive its waning popularity; 
They have a tough uphill battle 
against overwhelming odds. 

It appeared for a while that 3-D 
was. definitely on the way out until 
some surprising grosses were 
racked up by some of the more re- 
cent films in 3-D, I don’t think that 
seasoned showmen will overlook 
these figures no matter what their 
personal judgment may be on the 



Sam Binzior 

Brooklyn, N. Y. 

By all means I think that theatre 
men everywhere should do all in 
their power to encourage a flow df 
good pictures. 

bigger and 
more impor- 
tant pictures 
ha v e always 
been a boon 
to exhibitors. 
As a matter of 
fact it is this 
type of prod- 
uct that has 
kept the thea- 
tres in busi- 
ness. However, 
extended runs, 
while a possible solution for the 
key downtown and first run situa- 
tions are not necessarily the answer 
for neighborhood theatres which 
must have a steady flow of product 
because there are so many of these 
theatres, arid since the patronage 
comes from a limited area, the 
most they, can extend a run for is 
a day or two. 

It has been the experience of our 
industry that whenever technical 
improvements have come about, 
j within a short period of time the 
equipment has been greatly im- 
proved and the cost to exhibitors 
| greatly decreased. Therefore, in 
; the present situation, i think that 
the key runs and first runs, who are 
in a financial position to do so, 
should, install c both all-purpose 
screens and. stereophonic sound-. 
The subsequent-run exhibitor, how- 
ever, who cannot afford to gamble 
his small amount of capital on the 
present high cost of stereophonic 
sound should have the product 
available to him with his present 
type of screen and sound system 
, until such time in the near future 
j when the drop in cost will enable | 
'even the subsequent-run exhibitor 
to install this kind of equipment. 

I still, think that motion pictures 
; are the “poor man’s entertainmerit” 

! despite some rises - in admission 
' scales in Certain localities. When 
the average' admission price of 
theatres in this country is com- 
pared to the price of any other : 
commodity or service, it is quickly 


( Randforce Theatres j 

apparent that movies have gone up 
only very slightly in contrast to 
cornmodities and services which 
have increased so very, very much 
over the period of the past 10 

It is too early to make any defi- 
nite statement, but certainly there 
is the possibility that Ci nemaScope 
may be applicable to all pictures. 
Standardization, of course, is always 
a desirable achievement, but it 
should not be accomplished at the 
expense of continued experimenta- 
tion with new forms of entertain- 
ment media that will attract rnore 
patrons to our theatres. 

It is not necessary to have fewer 
pictures in order to make good 
pictures. The history of. the in- 
dustry will show that the greatest 
number, of good pictures were 
made when the maximum number 
of pictures were being produced by 
the studios. No one can tell posi- 
tively at the starting of a picture, 
whether it will eventually turn out 
to be a smash hit or not. 

Stereophonic Sound 

»r B,0. life Still In Pix Biz 



The year 1953 has proven with- 
out question that the picture busi- 
ness is sourid and its future secure. 
It was a struggle through 1952, but 

w e survived 
the blasting 
that outside 
c ompetitio n 
hurled at us. 
“If" that were 
not enough to 
harass our 
business, we. 
had an indif- 
ferent, unin- 
terested pub- 
lic predicting 

Harry B. French * 

Then boom! Third dimension! 
CineraaScope! Stereophonic sound! 
Panoramic screens! And the movies 
are bursting, out all over! New life 
—new interest— new enthusiasm- 
long lines at the boxoffice — and 
the public does an about-face: 
praises the new process, has kind 
words for the industry, and they 
all want to get into the act! 

They applaud “The Robe” and 
“How To Marry A Millionaire” 
and the wide panoramic screen, 
and express keen interest in com- 
ing attractions. They deriionstrate 
a willingness to accept the new 
processes— perhaps more willing 
than exhibitors are to give it to 
them. I think the theatre-going 
public is entitled- to all that is new 
in our business, and we better give 
it to them, particularly because 
they back up their enthusiasm by. 
placing their good old coin of the 
realm, on the b.o. counters. Adolph 
Zukor says, “The Public Is Never 
Wrong,” and I don’t think Mr. 
Zukor is wrong either, but right 
or wrong, we can’t survive without 
the public. 

We have seen the pattern 
change for the better with innova- 
tions that have startled the coun- 
try. Third dimension was the open- 
ing gun that revived movie inter- 
est in a lethargic public. In our 

theatres from a boxoffice and pa- 
trons’ standpoint, 3-D has been a 
disappointment, but I have confi- 
dence the illusion of third dimen- 
sion will be developed and that it 
will be accomplished with simpli- 
fied projection and without the 
use of glasses. 

CincmaScope has given a good 
account of itself to date, but con- 
fusion stitlnexists- in the mirids of 
exhibitors as to the proper aspect 
ratio of the screen. I am not con- 
vinced that 2H-to-l is right, al- 
though it is possible it will be ac- 
cepted universally. My personal 
opinion is that a ratio of about 
2-to-l is more practical and will 
be more applicable to a greater 
number of theatres, both large and 

The full impact of stereophonic 
sound has not registered as yet, 
but with newer technique and im- 
provements, it will play an im- 
portant part in the riew process of 
presentation. But with all the new 
electronic devices, technical equip- 
ment, panoramic screen, etc., the 
picture— the story and script— still 
is the fourth arid most important 

The movie business has boon 
built on the theory it is entertain- 
ment . for the masses. H i story li as 
definitely proved that theory is 
sound. Admission prices are an 
Important factor. Nothing in the 
entertainment field offers so much 
for the admission price as the mo- 
tion-picture theatre, arid! this is as 
true today as it was 50 years ago. 
Admission prices inust be flexible 
to meet various occasions, but 
never to a point where the price 
is not within the reach of every 

The campaign to eliminate the 
Federal admission tax, which got 
rolling in 1952 and zoomed into 
high speed in 1953, indicated 
what can be accomplished by unity 
and concerted action on the part 
of every one in this industry. 1954 
should see the realization of that 

Stereophonic sound is certainly 
something to be desired arid a goal 
for exhibitors to reach in the 
future. The present cost and state 
of technical improvement make its 
widespread installation in all the- j, 
at res a question to be answered 
very carefully in each individual 
situation, dependent upon eco- 
nomic and competitive conditions 

It is impossible to generalize on 
the release policies of distributors 
because each company, has its own 
approach, and in iriany instances 
the sales policy varies in any given 
company with each .particular pic- 

In bur circuit we have all types 
of physical structures, and so far 
we have not found one in which 
wide screens cannot, be installed. 

I think that the problem of . this 
type of instillation is more imagi- 
nary than real Even a small thea- 
tre can have a widescreen which, 
though not as large as the one in 
a Broadway house, will, neverthe- 
less, be in proportion to its own 
dimensions and number of seats. 

Exhibs Should Insure 
Steady Flow of Product 

( Fabian Theatres) 

New York. 

Without production, you can’t 
Hiave exhibition, so it seems exhibi- 
: tion should take all steps possible 
j to insure a steady flow of product 
; either by actively entering pro- 
duction or financing production, 
To me, it seems that the financing 
j of product, leaving the actual Work 
Ito men who are familiar_and can 
t be hired tor this purpose, is the 
[simplest and fastest way to assure 
: a flow of product. I believe it im- 
| portant that this product should 
jbe controlled by exhibitors so that 
it cannot be diverted to other 
channels' until it has served llie 
purpose for which it was produced 
— that of augmenting the theatre 
'supply. Bigger and better pictures 
■j will more than make up for quan- 
tity production and maintain a 
quality that will stimulate public- 

The technological changes in 
our industry, while costly, are 
something with which the exhibi- 
, tor must cope, as they present a 
i new aspect that has a definite iiri- 
I pact on public interest, as well as 
a technical improvement in pros- 
! entatiofi. Over the period, I think 
( these changes will be beneficial 
and are. necessary to compete with 
i the other mediums of entertain- 
ment that are continually chang- 
ing and trying to create added 
; public receptiveness. 

I I feel the different processes cm? 

: ployed should be valued according 
to the size of the theatre and type 
of pictures to be projected. Stereo? 
phonic sound is completely unnec- 
essary for the small .theatre, and 
I don’t feel that it has real com- 
mercial value in a large theatre, 
except for a truer and more di- 
rect application of sourid. 

In regard to duplicate versions 
of Cinemascope films, I believe, if 
feasible, they should also be pro- 
duced in standard methods, but 
should not be released as such un- 
. til the original presentation in 
t CincmaScope has been exhausted, 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 

■ * 

Wednesday, January 6 , 1954 

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fcdneadaft January ^ 1954 

Forly+ighth pfifejEfir Atmivenmry 


Change Always Hypos Biz 

phasize too strongly my own 
Lf based upon niy experience as 

j»ci> " ii.'.' 1.1 

Continued from pace l 

a showman, 

that the public will 

abandon us and our Industry will 
perish if w« allow other forms of 

in producing Cinemascope pic- 
tures, having made this process 
available to. producers, everywhere 
for quality pictures and more than 
50 Cinemascope pictures already 
have been announced for the com- 

entertainment to. take our au ^ i H t,lUs inswr ! n * « steady 

ences by default. 

This is the plain significance of 
our experience in this industry in 
the Inst .six . years, The present 
form of motion entertainment, with 
many fine pictures being offered 
to tiie public, simply has not met 
the exacting; attitude of people who 
live in. a dynamic period of change 
and have found home television to 
be a Convenient and inexpensive 

,| huw : uf screen entertainment in the 
! new medium. 


Suit for $2,500,000 has been filed 
against Warner Bros. Theatres 


Swedish Prise Film Called Set- 

way of occupying their leisure time ; ,e , l 5, by A T . 1S ‘ Blanehe Sarasin, who 
way o* y 6 m 1 additionally : asked for an injunc- 

even though they must take t i 0 n compelling the company to re- 

nicciiocre mate Is. . . 1 ° p -f " ine v^rove rneatre, which Film is now being held over be • we released the picture, they came 

It has often been pointed out i building she ^ owns,: According to- clause of the publicity. ,, to America’ and went on a safari 

•tJiiit more than 6,000 theatres have Mrs. Sarasm, the Warner chain : — . ■ " ■ i ' engineered bv MGM field men. 

bc,n dosed and the livelihoods o£, 

, . , . .... . , . . tice by bolstering the competition 

many peop.e destroyed during the , to : slice their own grosses and 
last few years -because we have i thereby defraud her of cash col- 
hot risen to the challenge that con- ' lectible under lease agreement. ; 
■fronts us. • | Warner Bros, chain had leased 

One of the contributory causes 

. .. r . • 1 sions that the landowner receive 

; of tins disaster in all truth was the | S2,000 . monthly and a percentage 

totally unfair and inequitable Fed- of the gross over $140,000 arinual- 

San Antonio. 

Local police vice squad tempo- 
rarily impounded the motion pic- 
ture “One Summer, of Happiness” 
which was scheduled for a three- 
day showing at the Arts Theatre. 
It’s a Swedish Film Academy 
award-winning film, ' ' 

Nude swimming scene and the 
“preoccupation” of the entire pic 
with sex was given as the objec- 

: Eph Charninsky, operator of the 
theatre, faces legal charge of 
“showing and exhibiting a lewd 
and lascivious v motion picture.” 
Charge could carry fine of $1,000 
and sentence of six months in 

Charninsky told the district at- 
torney’s office that he would de- 
lete the. objectional portions of the 
film if the print were returned to 
him. This was done and the nude 
footage cut! 

American Male Columnist Is Seldom 


( Eastern Publicity Director, Metro) 

The best way to get to know a 
Aim star is to accompany him (or 

her) on tour. It is also one of the 
best ways to get interviews and 
pictures in tiie papers. And if you 
ever feel that stars-have lost any 
of their appeal, visit the hinter- 
lands with one and watch the ex- 

For example, Bunny Allen. Bun- 
ny is an Englishman, transplanted 
at an early age to Africa, arid now 
one of the most famous of the 
white hunters, although he never 
met Boh Ruark. Bunny and his 
wife handled the. details for the 
“Mogambo” safari, the biggest such 
expedition ever mounted. When 


of Nome. If you shoot from the 
side, about where the car joins on, 
you have a much better chance. 
This kind of information is very 
useful for critics, even if they usu- 
ally aim at producers rather thari 

Some time ago, when we had a 
picture called “Lovely to Look At,” 
we organized' a tour by six Adrian 
models,, modeling some of the fabu- 
lous' Adrian-designed wardrobe. 
This developed some rather stag- 
gering problems, for the Adrian 
gowns took up much more space 
than the Adrian models. In fact, 
in Norfolk, the on'y hotel room 
available for the modal was not big 
enough t j hold both girl and gowns 
at the, same time. Until a larger 
room was finally vacated, the. mod- 
el had to step out in the haM when 
she opened her suitcases arid lib- 
erated those yards and yards of 

eral tax upon motion picture thea- 
tre admissions- The fight for re- 
peal of that tax during the year 
1953 provided another historic ex- 

ly. The theatre would be per-, 
niitted to close arid stop payments 
only if the gross in a single year 
averaged below $8,500 per month. 

Mrs. Sarasin accused the circuit ! 
ample of the ability of this indus- ; of intentionally booking p oor fil ms : 
try, when it makes up its mind, toT^^^ h^^ ^b"ea!ll’e arid 'giving pre- 

imUe and act for its own welfare i'f? rr £, d p *. x , t0 competing houses, ; 

.. „ ■ • ., the Capitol and the Rhodes, to pro-: : 

in a tiinc of crisis. i mote downgrade grosses at . the ' 

The campaign to bring about re- •! Grove, When revenue dropped un^ ! 
peal lias been called one of the; der $8,500 per month, the house 
niTJSTTcmiJU'kable~feats in legisia- 1 shuttered in 1951.; 
tive history because within a few | Case is being heard by Judge 

short , months, under the leadership ; George Fisher in U. S. Superior ’ 

engineered by MGM field men. 

The results were very pleasant, 

It isn’t every day a newspaperman 
i can interview a person who not 

Eddie Cantor has been named 
lifetime chairman, of the. March 

of Dimes of the Air, it was ah- j the best way tp shoot an elephant. ; . 
nounced by Basil O’Connor, presi- II seems an elephant has a brain ! Iy,) 
dent of the National Foundation • no bigger than a man’s hand, but • Trips like this give ample evi- 
for Infantile Paralysis. 'has a head bigger than a starlet • dc r -ce that the demise of vaudeville 

Cantor ‘ “ ' ‘ ' ‘ ----- , 

be given 

efforts in. behalf of the polio cam- a lot of territory that’s tougher 

d only knows a lot about Gable arid ; ( >vcr^irts, Ui^ersldrtsjioop skirts 
h ! Gardner, but can also advise you ’ and tu ” c - ,H °*' .^^•cssed has 
i- ! the best way to shoot an elephant. i-T le y er been ex Pl ained sat-s.acton- 

inianuie paralysis. ; has a head bigge* 4 than a starlet • uence inai ,ine uemise oi vauueyine 

intor is the first performer tp ; who has just made Lite’s cover. If : did not mean the end of troupers 

riven such recognition for his ; you shoot from the front, you face . with the old vaudeville spirit. Last 

*ts in. behalf of the polio earn- a lot of territory that's tougher • winter, to promote “Million Dollar 


'.than 'the subsequent run area north 

ot men like A1 Lichtman, Truman 
Rembuseh. Sam Pinariski, Abram 
Myers, Col. H, A. Cole, and Bob 
Coyne, an overwhelming majority 
of the Senate and House voted to 
repeal the bill. Unfortunately, the 
measure . was vetoed. Yet, great 
progress was made in that the | 
country's attention was unmistak- • 



9 Mins, 

Pa’ace, N, Y, 

Mermaid,” we sent six Mill-on Dol- 
lar Mermaids — swimmers who had 
dunked in the same pool with 
Esther Williams— through the na- 
tion. cpninletcly outfitted with 
bathing suits. Only problem was 
that “Mermaid” was a Christmas- 
New Year's release, and v e had a 
cold snap just about the time the 
girls left the orange groves. 

However, as the sayir.g goes, a 

RKO Product Lineap 

“Jet Pilot” and 
wyn’s “Best Years of Our : Lives” 
are conspicuously missing in the 

i the spot, followed by Eva. and the 

; capricious Zsa Zsa; much later. 

Cleavaged gowns of Eva and Zsa girl in a bathing suit in Ju v is no 
Zsa are nice for prolonged and low novelty; in Minneapolis in bcccm- 
: bows, but Madga eschews the ob- be r, she can be a simsation. even if 

I Sonny Moore’s Roustabouts com- : comedy T ’/ort oA“lrbS ; Ii ? lnl - v blue Being, humane, de- 

entertaining animal act ■ Sc^tSSes olac^lminMm- ^P-'e »ur, we booked the 

t w° ore . l )acin 8 l,1 a a in a Sisterly truce,, after which the' 

j schoolboy costume. A femme as- g a , s SO u are off f or darts. 

Hollywood i 1 slst5 Mm. Mpore concentrates on j n 33^0^5 sa tire of a Paul 
. j i comedy' effects, but at. vai.ious readins “Fir c t ' Hun- 

Samuel Gold- .times shows some excellent tricks gar - n D ran1a Quartet with Three 

Hungarians.” EvP, Magda, and. Zsa 
Zsa are lined across stage behind 

Gold- , times shows some excellent tricks 
in; the serioso!. vein. 

He . carries a pair of Shetland 

ablv callftH in a oro.i Q ini. 1 rti„o iniaMiig iii me ; -ne ..camss a ui oiitjuduu z,sa are nnea across stage, nenina 

fectin<» ihic mi *?;" 1 W st of 10 RKO releases set for : ponies and a pack of dogs of vari- glittering, heart-rhaoed sf.vncls vi»'- 

,ht the Janua^ to ane :peri.d: ' - - • 8 

way was prepared for future ac- a. 

prepared for future ac- 
tion which may be beneficial. Be- 
sides. we demonstrated our ability 
to unite and fight,: 

of Purpose 

.Therefore, does it not follow' 
tire same energy and unity of 
purpose can achieve undreamed 
0 benefits if it is concentrated on 
the supreme need of our industry 
today— that Of giving to the public 
lire finer quality of entertainment 

According to RKO prexy James 
R. Grainger, RKO will have 10 
pix during the first six months, of 
1954, eight in color and three in 
3-D. “Jet Pilot” has been on the 
shelf since its completion in 1950. 
“Best Years,” being reissued by 
Goldwyn, originally was art ?KO 
release. RKO sked does, however, 
list 11 rereleases between Febru- 
ary and July. 

Of the new pix; only January 
entry is W. Lee Wilder’s indie pro- 

hat it has so plainly shown that ! duction, “Killers From Space.” Set 
i must have? | for February are “The French 

Can we ignore the instantaneous Line” (3-D), and “She Couldn’t 
>mpact of Cinerama when that new No.” Walt Disney’s “Rob Roy” 
, m of entertainment was intro- 1 Soes in March, and “Dangerous 
diked and brought a rssj>onse .! Mission” (3-D) and. “The Carnival 
ie nnhii/* fK-,4- »u. — > u_. $tory” are skedded for April. “Son 

of Sinbad” in 3-D is set for May. 
Slated for June are “Susan Slept 
Here,” "Desperate Men” arid “The 
Big Rainbow.” 

Jroin- the public that showed be- 
. rid quest, 00 its craving for some- 
niing now and different? 

Naturally, we of 20th Century- 
convinced that Cinema- 

('Cin u dc I n ?°nstratcd that it is 
cual to the high challenge of the 

(nr Tl u" 1 succcs sfully cope with 
uu* deadly Competition. 

nunv the difficulties of 

immeHi*H llblt0 u? wl10 ’ P la S ue d By 
a I -m u tC p 4 roblehls . feel that it is 
ii’cl' In l ! n ,p r t0 . convert their thea- 
Wheci' 1 r’ 0 ^' t le eleme rits required 
of f, n n Cln . e ‘huSeope presentation 
sounri' c > 1C ,H U0S stereophonic 
ph'ic u. n « llltab ^ . screens, ariamqr- 
^o ;SS. ln some cases the- 

thjm our utmost to help 

<»!vn minV* S 11 determine in the£ 

^'con(V ;' dCd by L t he public; and 

connection l? elr P r °Wems in 
new L, ’ Ulth . the installation of 

(;i ncma<!cppe nt ^ they decide upon 

thin^ ftniL COntinde t0 d0 evei ’y‘ 

■ticsiMo b e nnd humanly prac- 
M| cl) aid ^ dnj one "ho applies for 


pus breeds. The nags do some 
standup tricks and offer a vehicle 
for the dogs. The. hounds obey 
instructions for some good effects, 
one of the best tricks being a sup- 
port on a rope held by Moore and 
his .assistant. 

Most of the time, there are many, 
things going on the boards. The 
dogs perform various antics on 

scribed with each contestant’s 
name> Reading from, script pre- 
sents femmes’ life, or lives, sup- 
posedly, from, sweet Budapest 
childhood to sweeter profits ac- 
quired after Maina Gabor taught . 
her little chick-a-dees the facts of 
life and finance. Naturally, the 
reading stresses each Gabor’s 
opinion of the opposite sex. Dur 

ihe fact 

v- uicioaSrnno u ~ remains that 
MU . s ‘ f j- ? pe . has. established it- 
pictuV’e i'nf' 0I ? y system of motion 
capabi ^^crtainment up to now 
10 tlre-„?ic dl f wing mas s audiences 

that notinnlr 1 rge u and small » and 
on the e ! se has yet appeared 
s^ene to fulfill this noecs- 

hn.pvcT. 20tl>Fox is not alone ' 

L, A. to N. Y. 

David O. Alber 
Mel Allen 
Lauren Bacall 
Humphrey Bogart 
Charles Brackett 
William Dozier 
Ross Martin 
Mitch Miller 
Norman Moray 
Edmond O’Brien 
. Stuart Reynolds; 

Thelma Ritter 
Cesar Romero 
Olga Sari Juan 
Joseph M. Schenck 
Spyros P. Skouras . 

N. Y. to L. A. 

Henry Ginsberg 
Abel Green 
Morgan Hudgins 
Kurt Kasznar 
Eleanor Parker 
Robert Taylor 
Carlos Thompson 

Europe to N. Y. 

Taina Elg 
Robert Pirosh 

N. Y. to Europe 

Kirk Douglas . 

Paul Gallico 
Buster Keaton 

various parts of Uve stage. There’s | ing this -talk-song, called i natch v 
a lot of business going on arid the | “Men,’’ there is mvicli lvrical scorn 
general effect is one of a lot of for bumbling mates. Background 
accomplishment. Jose. | music to this is paced at a crawl, 

: — — rr I however, interim ^a os are filled by 

. : two-way stares. After the last sti- 

THE COLEMANS j letto finds its mark, the GaborK?>rit 

Danc^, Song's is maneuvered. But . bowoff ap- 

10 Mins. , plause scarcely endures long 

Palace, N. Y. ^enough to bridge last glimpse of 

The Coiemans are a likeable a Gabor gown behind the silken 
Negro family, comprising parents curtain. Will. 

i and teenage son and daughter, j — 

i .They re. all fairly good hoofers, ^ .y/v ^ «• > > 
with the boy showing fine possi- . 
bilities in the song department. 

Parents open the session with a f. ™ VT 

spot of fast terping. . The lad takes Palace, N. Y, 

over and is joined by his sister.! Payo & Mai, European imports. 
All their efforts go over nicely. ] comprises a good opening turn 
The boy’s voice, at present, hasn’t 1 suitable for that spot in vauders 
settled down, but it seems to be ! and one which can play the out- 
I working itself into a good place- 1 door field with ease. Act has the 
ment and he looks like a possibility ’ boy working atop a unicycle and 
I in a- few years. The girl is sinii- ; juggling various objects. The girl 
1 iarly a promising performer, being ! acts as. assistant. 

1 able to knock off a good song, and 1 the lad has some excellent jug- 
she also shows superiority in the gling patterns. He manipulates 
terp division, ! Jose. hoops, balls, hats and other ob- 

— ^ — - — - ,.jects, ninny of them simultane- 

ously. His strongpoint. comes at 

bathing beauties at indoor pools, 
where we invited local columnists 
to do the first “underwater inter- 
view.” This worked, pretty well, 
for it gave us an excuse to get the 
girl 'and a reporter! into bathing 
suits. Whatever Kinsey s:;vs. lie 
cannot d'spute the o’d m’e of na- 
ture that, the average American 
male will not be too unfriendly 
during 'an inteniew with 'a. ^ell- 
built American female in a bathing 

One uf the largei>scale junkets 
oi the past year was the Tcxis ex- 
pedition of “Take the High 
Ground” when it opened in El 
Paso. San Antonio, Houston. Fort 
Worth and Dallas. In addition to 
Riqhard Widmark, the fair E'aine 
Stewart and Rusty Tam.blyn o' the 
cast, the company included Dore 
Sc h ary . -MGMls^v.p. of- 

prbductior, and George .Murphy, 
Hollywood’s ambassador of good 
will. It was hot and .dusty in 
Texas, which is a mighty big state 
if you are covering it by train from 
one personal appearance tow n to 

Wrong Symbol 


j 15 Mins. 

j Last Frontier. Las Vegas 

Shades of Willie Hammerslein! 
This " low’-ciit. highstyle. sideshow 
act will probably pull in enough 
! patronage to. give to the Last Fron- 
tier casino bosses a new unward 
lilt of their, cigars. But the Gabor 
. goulash on “merit” could scarcely ! 

the finale, when he drapes virtually 
every part of his body with liohps 
and they turn in every direction. 
He's off to a good mitt. Jose. 

9 Mins. 

Palace, N, \\ 
Stan Harper 

is a harmonica 

he booked elsewhere. Talent-wise.- player of near-virtuoso propof- 
these are hungry Hungarians— Zsa tions, He elicits a good tone. <),ut 

However, one of the lausrbs of 
the expedition was the moment 
when Dore Schary was- presented 
with a large Texas-type Ask'd 
by photographers to put it -on. he 
slid his fingers along the crrwn of 
the Stetson and two Texans dropped 
their bourbon glasses in shock. It 
seems that Schary. innocent of the 
nuances of Stetsoh-creasmg. had 
folded his sombrero into a "shcep- 
hefder’s erush.” which is about as 
popular in cattle country as wear- 
ing an orange tit in Dublin on St, 
I’atrick's Day. 

Moving in before a single flash- 
bulb could pop, a cattleman quick- 
ly re-erusned the hat. sc that 
Schary was able to pose .properly*. 
The .new crush ' identified, him .as 
the osvncr of a large ranch, well- 
slocked with cattle. 

In just a couple woek«. we break 
the .ehahrir.gne bottle over a ivpli- 
ea of “The Long, Long Trailer’.’ 
ifrom the nieture of the same 

fori sucker supremacy. "Tiger Rag. 

The Gabors are no. better than , Harper, unfortunately, seems to 
; they should be as a unit. Their. ; lower his musical standards with 
brief “act,” scripted by Herb Baker; attempts at gimmicking t hai 
is clever and sophisticated in the ' don’t seem to come oif, He piays 
i main, but 
is completely 

I which sister 
. eided when . Magda 

called “Gypsy Colt” on i'.r way, 
and they tell us the horse 'who 
plays the title role is terrifically, 
photogenic, so it looks like there 


Forty-eighth f^BHETY Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Continued from page 5 

have sounded to the pure in spirit 
as "Aw, shucks," but to the raffish 
in spirit it was something decided- 
ly different. The fact that the 
word was wafted across the air- 
waves of. the. land during Lewis’ 
appeal for contributions to restore 
the bombed churches of Germany 
made matters considerably more 
distressing for all concerned; Man- 
agement quickly canned the an- 
nouncer who made the remark near 
a mike he thought was dead. 

This choice four-letter word also 
played a return engagement on the 
"Crime Syndicated” television pro- 
gram when the highly polished an- 
nouncer Went to work on' the 
Schick commercial. Another dandy 
booboo waS the introduction given 
to a model agency, head who ordi- 
narily is known as "The Merchant 
of Venus." Arthur Godfrey’s an- 
nouncer declared that “Congress 
packed an ass” instead of "Con- 
gress passed an act;" The red- 
faced announcer tried to squirm 
Out of this by saying rather lame- 
ly, "Fifteen years in radio and I 
had to make a fluff like this." 

Slightly reminiscent of the old 
radio Bond Bread fluff ("for the 
breast in bed try, Bronze bed, etc, 
etc.) was the one that on the tele- 
vision channels when the emcee 
asked his female guest interviewee: 
"Is it true you were chosen one of 
the 10 best-breasted women in the 

country? " ■ . . 

f ~ Biological Candor | 

Candor of a biological nature 
abounded on the television audi- 
ence participation shows during the 
past 12 months. Here the award 
should go to "Strike It Rich" which 
featured some of the best straight- 
from-the-shoulder conversation of 
a pure-eyed eight-year old moppet. 
Warren Hull greeted the child con- 
testant, "Why do you want to 
strike it rich?", he asked. “Be- 
. cause I need a. bed,” she smiled at 
him. "Why do you need a bed?”, 
he pressed gently. "Well,” the 
child cooed, "daddy is in the army 
apd I sleep with mommy but on 
Saturday Uncle Charlie comes and 
I have to sleep in the kitchen.” The 
result was. bed-lam. 

Sports fans are tittering at the 
manner in which the television 
sportscaster described the ladies 
present at a Madison Square Gar- 
den fight. "Several are quite 
dressed up." he reported. “There 
are a number, in fact, in goWnless 
evening straps.” 

Many of the guests on air shows, 
pros and non-pros, are not endowed 
with excessive intelligence and this 
Is quite evident from eavesdrop- 
ping on their verbal jousts with 
emcees and night owl jabberjock- 
les, Herb Shriner asked a con- 
testant on his “Two for the Money” 
program: “Are you a natural 

come histories, young and old, will 
gather in the card-playing rooms 
of the Lambs and the Friars and 
recount the unprecedented be- 
havior of a certain thespian work- 
ing on the "Broadway TV Theatre" 
who suddenly cast aside the com*: 
mercial he was due to read and 
instead decided to satisfy a life- 
long ambition by giving the spon- 
sor’s product one terrific verbal 
razoo. He made several derisive 
cracks about the sponsor and then. 
It is reported, he thumbed his nose 
at both the program producer and 
the product. All this happened in 
plain view Of the television audi- 
ence, It was a magnificent per- 
formance and, as Jack O’Brian, the 
television and radio critic of the 
N. Y. Journal-American put it: "It 
was a climax seldom witnessed in 
any. branch of . showbusiness . 
one stricken stagehand said he 
never had observed so magnificent 
a snub to the conventions in all 
his years of ministering to the guys 
and ropes of backstage theatricals 
ranging back to the Barrymores — 
all of them." Station execs were 
up in arms about the actor’s be- 
havior and had him brought up on 
charges. The local board of AFTRA 
slapped him down with a 90-day. 
suspension for his unflattering on- 
camera cracks. V 
Merry Hades also broke loose on 
a recent television program spon- 
sored by a beer concern. On this 
malty occasion an announcer with 
considerable joy in his eyes and 
foaming glass of beer to his lips 
had just finished expressing his 
undying gratitude to the sponsor 
for brewing one of the finest 
quench thirsters in America when 
a roving camera caught the spieler 
in the highly undignified act of 
spitting the beautiful light lager 
into a tin can. This announcer was 
certainly no beer fancier nor did 
he subscribe to the old Teutonic 
saying that “Die Brauerei is die 
beste apotheke”_or "the brewery 
is the best drugstore.” , j. 

Company-by-company rundown of films Sent into circulation ^ 
1953, promising to gross $1,000,000 or over in domestic (U. S. and 
Canadian) distribution rentals. 

No. of 
Films Over 

1. 20th-Fox 21 

2. Metro . . ...................... - 23 

3. Paramount 

4. Warners ............ ........ 

5. Universal 

6. Columbia 

7. RKO ; . . 

8. United Artists 

9. Republic 


. ' 5" 



$ 60,550,000 




• 24,850,000 

14.400.000 ' 




Season’s Best to All! 

dramatic scenes Who ate heavy 
meals and walked out of the res- 
taurants without bothering to pay 
their checks. 

The female anouncers on the 
television cooking programs Who. 
opened gas ranges and pulled out 
sizzling hot dishes without the aid 
of gloves or pot holders. 

The youngster on television who 
boasted: “I have been using Pepso- 
dent toothpaste Since I was a little 
boy and my mother and father have 
been using Pepsodeht since they 
were little boys,” 

The sportscaster who thought the 
mike was dead and uttered the sage 
remark: “Wow, what a stinking 

Looking Where They Ain’t 

born citizen 'drfheTJnited States?” 
"Oh, no,” the woman assured him, 
"I was a Caesarean.” 

Followers of the after-midnight 
disk jockey pundit circuit teehee 
when they recall Henry Morgan’s 
interview with a widely known fe- 
male pop singer over WMGM. She 
outmalaproped the original Mrs. 
Malaprop. This vocalist’s misuse 
of words was exactly what Massa’ 
Morgan needed to start the satiri- 
cal ball rolling down memory lane. 
.At one point in the interview she 
told Morgan he was a "well-read 
courtestan.” This observation left 
Morgan speechless, but only for 45 

| Deadpan Commercials | 

Before old Doc Vladimir Kosma 
Zworykin got around to inventing 
‘ the iconoscope, which almost 
knocked radio for a loop^the-Ioop, 
any actor in the privacy of a studio 
could read a commercial while on 
the air and at the same time make 
any number of grimaces. As a rule, 
there was no one to take him to 
task if during the reading . of the 
line, “Blotz’s Bubble Gum Is Bet- 
ter Than Butter in the Belly,” he 
screwed up his proboscis 

Roving . cameras have snafued 
many a good program- They have 
brought guffaws to viewers in the 
home and terrible embarrassment 
to all concerned in the studio. 
Stagehands have been caught in 
the damdest positions and films 
have been bawled up; food props im 
tended for upcoming commercials, 
have been consumed by hungry ac- 
tors and electric refrigerators, 
safety razors and countless other 
gadgets have refused to function 
properly when the camera focused 
on them. 

Clinical research reveals many 
air slips and snafus worthy of in- 
clusion in a year-end catalog and 
in the interests of higher trade 
journalism this fluff pathologist 
herewith offers you: 

"Try Betty Crocker’s green split 
poo seep.” 

“Keep a stuff ipper lup." 

"Good ladies, evening and gen- 
tlemen of the audio radiancy.” 

Introducing Walter Pidgeon, an 
emcee said: "Mr. Privilege, this is 
indeed a Pidgeon” and immediately 
followed this up with "our sponsor 
is the biggest manufacturer of 
maghocsium, aleeminum and stool.” 

The Louisville, Kentucky, an- 
nouncer who said: "The Stork 
Club on Seventh Street has had 
its leer and bicker license revoked," 

Helen Hayes’ fluff on Omnibus: 
"And so the princess and her fairy 
price celibated their wedding." 

The huckster who was pitching a 
reducing weight pill. "My product 
is best for woosing leight," he 

Abe Massey In AFTRA 

The extra on the television pro 
duction of "Abe Lincoln in Illi- 
nois” starring Raymond Massey 
who muffed his line during a crowd 
scene showing the departure of 
the Great Emancipator. At the top 
of his lungs the extra yelled 
Yn flip ! “Good bye Mr. Massey.” This time 
solemn sanctity of a radio studio he I - iey assassinated the extra, 
could thus show his displeasure T,ie night Robert Montgomery 
with the proSe fashioned in the kept referring to the guest star on 
copywriting mills on Madison Ave- his_ dramatic program, Teresa 
nue. . It was usually safe enough Wright, as Martha Scott, 
for him to make all the funny faces Judge Heffelfinger’s interview on 
he wanted provided the sponsor Mel Allen’s White Owl show. "They 
was not present in the goldfish • make trie sick," was Pudge’s judg- 
bowl. i ment of the stogies, - 

But ’tis not so in the field of j The actor who portrayed a side 
audio-visual entertainment. Televi- show barker on "The Web” and 
sion calls for a great deal more who kept shouting: “Come on, 
care and . devotion to details that folks, only 20 cents— one-tenth of 
would ordinarily be overlooked irt a dollar!” 

AM entertainment. In years to The actors in a flock of television 

55/ Continued from page 5 

No Liquid Courage Here 

The performer, who while plug- 
ging his sponsor’s . dry-wine, tried 
to open a bottle and splashed the 
entire contents over the rest of the 
cast. "This was awfully wet stuff 
for a dry wine,” he said lamely. A 
cancellation order came through 
the following day. 

The female performers on tele- 
vision programs Who said such 
things as "I wouldn’t dare meet 
my boy friend the way I’m dressed. 
These, clothes I’m wearing is sure 
awful." And at the end of the pro- 
gram there were screen credits for 
the swank shops that supplied the 

The night Marilyn Maxwell 
guested on "What’s My Line?" and 
one of the panelists asked her: 
“Are you female?” "Yes,” she 
cracked, “the last time I looked,” 

No account of the year’s mishaps 
would be complete without calling 
attention to the young man who 
walked into a New York City tele- 
phone booth and when he picked 
up the receiver he heard voices 
and music. For a while he thought 
he had intruded in a private party 
but in a moment or two he heard a 
voice say: “This is Johnny Olsen’s 
Rumpus Room, WABD, Channel 5.” 

public foie 

in black-and-white, "Eternity" is 
headed for $12,500,000 in distribu- 
tion coin. This one pic has been a 
tremendous bolstering factor in 
Col’s finances and. was largely re- 
sponsible for rise in the company’s 
stock to new highs in trading quo- 

Third is Paramount’s "Shane,” 
now shaping as the biggest west- 
ern on the books. Photographed 
iff the standard aspect ratio but 
shown on many widened screens 
in its early playoff, “Shane" ap- 
pears a cinch to reach $8,000,000 
in Par’s collections from home- 
market exhibs. 

‘Cinerama’ Standout 

Cinerama must be included in, 
if not at the head of, any list of 
pic greats. It has been an incred- 
ible coin collector, but also an 
unique One. "This Is Cinerama” 
is now playing in only seven thea- 
tres, and S. H. Fabian, who’s at the 
helm, claims a total theatre gross 
already of over $6,500,000. 

This obviously is insuffiqierit to 
justify any longrange crystal-ball- 
ing on what amount of money 
eventually will be brought in. Big 
questions center on how many 
houses can and will be equipped 
for it, and whether it can spread 
out into more than one theatre in 
a single area. (It opened its solo 
N. Y. run Sept. 30, 1952, and is 
continuing at an amazingly steady 
pace.) Further, since Cinerama is 
an integrated outfit, there’s no 
breakdown on exhib-distrib money 
as obtains with' other product. 

‘Bwana’ Started If 

The year’s b.o. excitement (some 
uplifting, some downbeat) had an- 
other contributing factor in : 3-D. 
The medium got off like a house 
on fire with Arch Oboler’s "Bwana 
Devil” and reached its highpoint 
with Warners’ "House of Wax.” 

“Bwana," released (and later 
bought outright from flholer) hy 

phone puzzled him no end, and he 
asked the telephone company to 
explain. They mumbled something 
about a cross-connection of TV and 
telephone wires in the main office. 

Later in the season baseball fans 
watching the Giants-Dodger game 
over WPIX were treated to voices 
on the soundtrack of an English 
film placed oyer Russ Hodges’ voice. 
"What’s going on theah?” a British 
voice wanted to know as Dem Bums 
filled all the bases. A few moments 
later when one of the Brooklyn 
Superbas reached home plate, a 
supercilious British voice sniffed: 
“What rot!" Despite the disdainful 
British cracks, the Dodgers won. 
No one, however, was able to give 
a satisfactory explanation for the 
sudden visit from Our English 

Walter .Winchell has maintained 
that "if you don’t fluff at least 
once, nobody knows you’re human.” 

"Human, shmooman " perform- 
ers say, “it should happen only to 
a dog!" 

Wallis-Par Co-Production 
Deal on 

Hollywood, . 

Hal Wallis and Joseph Hazen 
signed a hew joint production deal 
with Paramount for the filming of 
“The Big Top," a circus story star- 
ring Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. 
Film will be made in Phoenix, us- 
ing facilities, performers and ani- 
mals of the Clyde Beattty Circus. 
Shooting starts Feb. 15; 

Lewis will be cast as a clown 
with ambitions to become a lion 
tamer. Martin will play one of the 
owners of the show. 

United Artists, because of its 
startling grosses at the beginning, 
set Hollywood off on a 3-D binge, 
On the basis of early dates, the 
freak production looked heading 
for a gross of well over $5,000,000. 
But the public wised up and the 
quickie is winding up with $2,700- 
000, still a handsome profit for a 
30QG investment. 

“Wax” was one of the later 
starters in the dimensional sweep- 
stakes and tops the extra-Dee ros- 
ter for 1953. It figures to conclude 
its full playoff, mostly 3-D and 
some 2-P, with $5,500,000. 

Like Par with “Shane," other 
companies were feeling their oat- 
ers. These outdoor actioners were 
found somewhat similar to specta- 
cles iff that they’re nicely adapta- 
ble to widescreening or 3-D. WB’s 
“Charge At Feather River,” a 
3-D'er, is unusually big for a sage- 
brush entry, at $3,650,000. 

ho longer the -names that count at 
the b.o. so much as size and in'- 
tegrity of production and depth ot 
story. Jean Simmons wou I d ap- : 
pear to rate as first actress becauso 
her pik made the most money-* 
$21,850,000 via “Robe" ($20,000. 
000) and "Young Bess” ($1,850,- 
000). But With “Robe” it was pro- 
duction that starred, ; with an im- 
mense ad-pub campaign featured, 
at least. 

Also, the valid batting average 
is one based on at least several 
trips to; the plate. But, for the 
record, and because it reflects to 
what extent the femmes will^be in 
pictorial circulation, here’s the 
lineup of number of films in which 
they appeared iff the, total gross: 0 

No. of 

Player Pix Gross 

1. Jeari Simmons ..2 $21,850,000 

2. Deborah Kerr . 4 18,450,000 

3. Marilyn Monroe . . 3 1 4,950,000 

4. Betty Grable ...2 8.650,000 

5. Jean Arthur .... 1 . 8,000,000 

With those same qualifying com- 
ments equally applicable, here's 
how the male stars came through: 

2. Victor Mature 

3. B. Lancaster 

4. Mont. Clift . 

5. Alan Ladd . . 

For purposes 
"Robe" . is being regarded as a 
$20,000,000 grosser although, as 
previously stated, it could go high- . 
er. Also, only top-line stars are 
considered in the Variety listing. 
For example, Lancaster, Clift and 
Miss Kerr are credited for ‘ Eter- 
nity" while Frank Sinatra and 
Donna Reed are not. 

I A Kerr-Load of Deborah I 

. .2 


. :1 


. .3 


. .2 


, .4 




Did Over $4,000,000 

Eleven pix in all climbed into 
Variety’s list of outstanding prod- 
uct of all time, that is, with in- 
dicated domestic grosses of $4,- 
000,000 or over. In addition to 
those already mentioned are 20th’S 
"How to Marry a Millionaire" 
(also in C’Scope), $7,500,000; RKO- 
pisney’s “Peter Pan," $7,000,000; 
RKO-Goldwyn’s "Hans Christian; 
Andersen," $6,000,000; Metro’s 
“Mogambo," $5,200,000; 20th’s 
"Gentlemen Prefer Blondes," $5,- 
100,000; UA’s “Moulin Rouge," 
$5,000,1100, and Col’s “Salome," 

Some Lucky Stars Due 
For Wide Circulation 

As for the talent, some were 
lucky stars. For in some cases it’s 

~MisV"Kerr “competed via ‘‘Eter- 
nity,’’ “Prisoner of Zenda,” “Bess' 
and "Thunder in the East”; Miss 
Monroe, "Millionaire,’ "Niagara’ 
and “Blondes"; Miss Grable. “Mil- 
lionaire" and "Farmer Takes a 
Wife"; and Miss Arthur, "Shane.’ 

Burton, “Robe" and “Desert 
Rats”; Mature, "Robe”; Lancaster, 
“Eternity," "Come Back, Little. 
Sheba" and "South Sea Woman ; 
Clift, "Eternity" and "1 Confess; 
and Ladd, "Thunder in the East ; 
"Shane"; "Botany Bay” and “Des- 
ert Legion;’’ 

Good eample of where the stars, 
themselves, shine consistently 1 3 
the team of Dean Martin & Jenf 
Lewis. Comics have three films in 
the 1953 lineup — "Stooge. 

"Scared Stiff" and "Caddy”— and 
each of them is listed at the same 

The lead position among the 
film comoanies was taken by 2Ull J 
with 21 films arid total rentals or 
$60,550,000 (including “Robe ai 
$20,000,000). M-G follows with ^ 
pix at $52,775,000. Same two ou J 
fits were at the top last year P 
in reverse order. 

Par continued in show position 
but marking impressive 
ment over, last year. Par’s ’53 ta y 
is 18 pix with total rentals of • 
500,000; in ’52, it was 15 produc 
tions at $42,360,000. 

Frank; Ross, of / course, tops in- 
dividual producers in iffoney .co . 

with “Robe," his only time oiu. 
Last year’s filmmaking topper 
Leonard Goldstein, who w° n 0 ne 
such competitors as Cecil ® . 

Mille, Sam Zimbalistl Hal Warn 

and Darryl F. Zanuck. GoWstcin 

had only four entries this > 
though, compared with etgb 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty ^eighth Anniversary 

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Motion Picture Film Department 


Beat Coatf Division 
342 Madison Avenue 
New York 17, N. Y. 



Midwetl Division 

137 North Wabash Avenue 

Chicago 2, Illinois 


Wes/ Coast Division 
6706 Santa Monica Blyd^ 
Hollywood 38, CaWwiia 

Forty-eighth Ufinmfir Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, I954 





Forty-eighth Annivertary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Miss Sadie 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 


I- * 

.1 ’ 
i •' 

To SIDNEY SKOLSKY, who gave birth to the whole idea; the 

/ho went through with it; ALFRED E. 
it; RAY H El NDORF, for his music; 


Grandma Esther; the rest of the 
and to everyone else who contributed their efforts to the 
making of 




Fmrty-eighth AnnicerMary 

We&Ktday, Jtwnary «, 1954 



In Release: 


In Preparation: 





— HERBERT T. KALMUS^ President and General Manager - 

Showplace of the Nation 

Rockefeller Center, N. Y. 


institution known throughout 
and stage shows notable for 

the world for its presentation of outstanding motion pictures 
their good taste, beauty and perfection of execution. 



—4*. — - — 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth l^AfjlKT'Y Anniversary 

4 - 










Forty-eighth AmnwtriMy 

WedMwhf, January 6, 1954 






. 'i ■' V 

Warner Bros. 

W«]ne8<1ayi January 6, 1954 

n ■ ; 

Forty-eighth t^AYilETY Anniversary 

American Broadcasting-Paramount Theatres, Inc. 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 





KVdnewIay, January 6, 1954 



Forly-eighlh ^Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, I954 


Now in 








/ / 


Just Completed For Relea$e 





Fitch, Henry Miller and Vir^ 
Herbert. Vlct0r 

George M. Cohan was the Ahhntt 
in 1912. They gave dinners a 
L. Erlanger, John Drew, Lee Shn 
bert, Oscar Hammerstein. Cow 
Belasco, William Harris, De Wni?' 
Hopper, Sam H. Harris. David 
Warneld, Jerry J. Cohan. Mayo! . 
John P. Mitchell, Irving Berlin 
John Ringling, William A. Bradv 
Enrico Caruso and Jimmy Walk*?! 

During the depression no din-- 
ners were given although some of 
the sticklers for tradition though 
they should hold them as usual* a 
Kellog's Cafeteria. /■■■,; U 1 at 

The “modern'’ dinners began 
with the Joe; E. Lewis bandue 
Nov,. 3, 1950— one of the most 
memorable salutes to anybody in 
the last quarter of a century. 

It required no toastmaster, as it 
was done on the stage, via a series 
of sketches, and at its peak Toots 
Shor was given “the pie-in-the- 
face” bit. Toots has thought of 
himself as an actor, without inter- 
ruption, since. 

On Nov, 9, 1951, Jack Benny 
was given the Friars’ treatment 
CBS boss Bill Paley’s '. eulogy was 
one of the most outstanding. 

“We said to Jack when he came 
to work for us, ‘You can have any- 
thing we have/ ” said Paley. "To 
Ills everlasting credit, he hasn’t 
taken , advantage of us. We still 
have our building at 485 Madison 

Fred Allen commented upon 
Jack’s fiddling. ; 

“He’s the only violinist who 
makes you . feel that the strings 
would sound better back in the 
cat.” said Fred. 

Repalling their earlier davs. 
Fred said: 

“I .first met him in vaudeville. in 
Centralia, 111. I was playing the 
big house and Mr. Benny was play- 
ing a suburb. The theatre was so 
far back in the woods, the man- 
ager was a bear. He used to pay 
the acts off in honey. 

“Jack was in the war, and was 
the first sailor in history to get 
seasick in the recruiting office. He 
had to take drammamine to look 
at. the Yacht Club Boys. About 
this dinner,' there is only one Friar, 
who would travel 6.000 miles to 
get a free meal — that’s Jack 
Benny.” : 

This year he’s traveling 3,000 
miles to get another one— to be 
toastmaster, for the salute to 
Georgie. I hope I get a good seat. 

I want to be close enough to watch 
peorgie listen in frustrated silence 
for two or three hours— unable to 
taik until the very end. I wonder 
if they won’t have to change the 
procedure and let the guest of 
honor speak first? 



Next year — 1954— it’s going to 
be different. 

(It’s always going to be different 
next year, and it never is, but this 
next year it’s really going to be 
O.K.? ) . 

The Friars Club is giving a din- 
ner, and the toastmaster is not go- 
ing to be Georgie Jessel. So you 
see it’s a different year already. 
The toastmaster is going to be Jack 
Benny. Oh, they’ll have a guest of 
honor, and in just a second I’ll 
think of his name. 

The guest of honor will be 

Georgie Jessel. 

. (Sure, you already heard it. But 
did you hear anybody take so long 
telling it?) 

How fitting that “the Toastmas- 
ter General” should be guest of 
honor at the Waldorf-Astoria Feb. 
21, 1954 (still a few choice tickets 
available, call Carl Timin). I am 
already wondering/ what Fred Al- 
ien will say about him. Fred lias 
never been so pungent, penetrat- 
ing or piercing as he is at Friars’ 

You may have been there last 
year when Bob Hope was the g. of 

h. Milton Bcrle was then the Ab- 
bott of the Friars. 

“I appear before you tonight 
with mixed emotions,” Fred said. 
“The Friars is a most unusual fra- 
ternal organization. 

“Some weeks ago, I was sitting 
at home . ; when the phone rang. 
It was Jesse Block asking me to 
speak at this dinner. 

“At the very instant that Jesse, 
the head of the entertainment 
committee of the Friars, was ask- 
ing me to do the Friars a favor, 
the Abbott of the Friars Was on 
television telling some jokes that, 
belonged to me. The U delegates 
can learn something from the 
Friars technique.” 

Fred went on to mention that 
the Friars don’t work their dinners 
like other organizations, which get 
a guest of honor first. 

The Friars, Fred said, make sure 

Jessel’s available to be toastmas- 
ter. Then they send out to Holly- 
wood for a guest of honor. 

“They have to send out to Holly- 
wood.” Fred explained, “Most of 
the New York Friars are out of 

50th Anniversary 

I have been doing some research 
about these dinners and found out 
that the Friars in the beginning 
was not the Friars-r-but was the 
“Press Agents Association.” That 
was in 1904. Charles Emerson 
Cooke, publicist for Djfvid Belasco, 
was the first head of the group. 
Channing Pollock, then p.a., for 
the Shuberts, was another founder, 
and so was John W. Rumsey, who 
is now an honorary life member. 

ArOund 1907 the Friars name 
was adopted.; Guests of honor at 
those early dinners were Clyde 

“Have You Buried/ Your Tal- 
ents?.” an interview with Mary 
•Martin, leads off the first issue 
of Faith Today, new inspirational, 
non-sectarian religious mag which 
v.ent on the stands yesterday 
• Tues.). Other show biz names in 
the preem issue are Marion Mill 
Preminger, who writes on Albert 
Schweitzer under the title. “The 
Greatest Man Living,” and William 
Saroyan with an excerpt from 
“The Human Comedy.” 

. Publisher and editor is Peter V. 
K. Funk, third, generation of the 
publishing -family and formerly an 
editor with Wilfred Funk. Inc. 
Current 'issue is dated Feb.-Mar., 
and the second issue, now on the 
Press, Is due in two months. Mag 
Will probably switch to a monthly 
schedule with the third number, 
Contents will include wide range 
of popular religious material from 
both lay and clergy authors of all 
oenoininations, about two-third* 
original and one-third reprints, 
mainly from books. Pocket sized at 
125 pages, mag sells for 35c ana 
carries ho ads. 

MGM Studios 

«r January 6, 19S4 

Forty-eighth J/Sni't^rr Anniceriary 

Bob Hope 




Announce the purchase of Horace McCoy's 
exciting and daring new novel 





Preparing for production 

ion in early 


— Now In Release — 







745 5TH AVE. 

Continued. Jrpm page 

/Cause of ills inexperience, his ex- 
peiimeuuu ion or his freshness, of 
point' o! view, he is • .ill-fitted to 
cope. Thus: it is /that the new 
writer the experimental plaw 
"must ’’try lu find a more hospitable 
birthplace than among the trade 
winds, of Broadway. 

Imbued with a desire' to make it 
possible to try .'out the plays of the 
young-' author. The Theatre Guild 
and the Westport 'Conn.) Country 
Plav horde have for a number of 
years'.- been hospitable to young 
u lifers with varying results. One 
of these authors. Robert McEnroe, 
wrote “The Silver Whistle.” which 
was produced' in the bucolic atmos- 
phere of the summer of 1948 with 
Jose Ferrer- in the lead ar.d after-' 
wards played a season on Broad- 
way and another season on the 
road. "Come Back. Little Sheba,” 
by a new// writer, . William Inge. 

produced in Westport in 1950, 
achieved a similar success on 
Broadway and the road and also 
made ope of the best motion . pic- 
tures of i.ts year. This past sum- 
mer a number of new. plays by new 
. American authors were tried . out, 
and one of the best of these, “The 
Trip to Bountiful.” by Horton 
Foote, was also brought to Broad- 
way. . /-'. ■ '• 

No Big Welcome [ 

| Were these, last two plays, both 
! of them indicating wTitirig of al 
rfirstciass order. Welcomed with 
/open arms? Not a bit of it. While 
j some of the discerning had the 
I ability to see in them the existence 
j of firstc’.ass theatrical writers with 
much to contribute to the future 
of the American theatre, curiously, 
enough the majority of the acco- 
lades were heaped, not upon the 
heads of the authors, but upon the 



actors who portrayed the roles 
which the authors— had-^mften-^ 
Thus, it was that in ‘/Sheba,” Shir- 
ley. Booth and Sidney Blackmor re- 
ceived the topmost praise in their 
| careers and. generously shared 
| their ..acclaim with William Inge, 
j The same thing happened, ..with 
j Lillian Gish and J o Van Fleet in 
j the case of “Bountiful.” 

]. Continuing- her success -in -the 
' part of Lola in motion -pictures'! 

; Sliirley Booth not only w on the. 

I Academy Award for the best ac- 
■ tress of the year, but also won 
! practically every theatre award for 
i the best acting and the award at 
Cannes for one of the best.aeiresses 
jin the world of motion pictures. 

! But what of the playwrights 
; themselves— the men who w rote 
j the plays in Which these actors 
: and actresses w:on such high 
laurels? One would almost be 
j forced to. believe that these per- 
formers. had in some miraculous 
way written their own parts arid 
had ad libbed them all through 
the play, for seldom did one find 
any recognition that a fine writer 
i had written a great part which had 
been greatly acted.. Yet we who 

• put on plays in the theatre, inducl- 
s ing the actors and . actresses who 
! appear in them, know that no. per- 
former can give a great perform- 

: ance Unless the writer has written 
a great part. Although we give the 
-■ fullest , credit to those magnificent 
actors and actresses, Shirley Booth 

• and Sidney Blackmer in “Sheba.” 
l and Lillian Gish, Jo Van Fleet, Eva 
| Marie Saint and the rest of the 
j cast in “Bountiful,” we take our 
j hats . off to the. authors of these 

plays, William Inge and Horton 

by that band of enthusiasts which 
-ii-fways— luves -\vo rks- of -art in the 
theatre and* hut for its sale and 
tremendous success as a motion 
picture, would have passed into ob- 
livion. The sanie Was true of 
“Bountiful,” which was cheered by 
Theatre, Guild audiences night af- 
ter night, T|here was this differ- 
ence between “Sheba” and “Boun- 
tiful.”. ;' hpweye i*— “Shfiha”. had._one r 
set and could survive on a boxof- 
fic.e business of $13,000 to 814.000 
a week. . “Bountiful,” with th ree 
sets calling for over 15 stagehands, 
j could not survive on this kind Of, 

; business. / Thus, the greatest per- 
j formance in Lillian/ Gish’s career 
and the advent of a brilliant ac- 
j tress, Jo Van Fleet, as well as one 
j of the season’s best plays, passed 
! into the limbo of the missing: 

| One. of the signs of a new and 
j important author is his ability to 
create magnificent acting parts. 
When we think of O’Neill, we re- 
member Anna Christie, the Em- 
peror Jones, Nina Leeds of 
“Strange Interlude” and a dozen 
other parts, : Similarly, . we recall 
the part of Amanda played by 
f Laurette Taylor in “The Glass 
Menagerie,” the part of Blanche 
played by Jessica Tandy, in “A 

Streetcar Named. Desire” by Ten- 
nessee WTITanis. The manager who 
cherishes a young author will not 
attempt to present his plays with 
actors in capable of' portraying the ■ 
parts. Thus it is that there arc a . 
number of plays now' ‘'going the 1 
rounds” written by new authors ' 
with splendid acting parts which 
momentarily lack the aclOrs to 
play., them, 

-. Waller Kerr recently wrote that 
we may be approaching the end 
of one of the greatest eras of the 
theatre, However, “tliis ain't 
necessarily so.” We can- certain ly 
postpone tiie. end of the era by the 
way we; welcome new' w riters, both 
• as managers who are willing to ex- 
periment. with , new authors, au- 
thors who are willing to support 
such an institution as the New 
Drariialists Committee, and our 
critics who are ever on the lookout" 
for the new and worthwhile. writer. 
Let it be remembered by those 
who mutter in their beards against 
the present, idiosyncrasies of 
George Jean Nathan, that it was. he 
iii the days of his youth who 
shouted lb. the housetops hosannas 
of Welcome to Eugene O’Neill— 
the young American writer of yes- 
teryear; . 


‘Salute” to them. 


(All For MGM) 


For it was their talent as writers 
which made this great acting pos- 

Our memory in the theatre is- 
I short. Many of us today are Un- 
1 der the impression that “Sheba” 
j Was a great success and won splen- 
did acclaim which recognized the 
introduction of a new' and impor- 
I tant writer. Nothing could be 
further from the truth. The play 
was hardly welcomed at all or, if 
so, only grudgingly. It was. loved 

Season's Greetings 



Chicago* Illinois 


Rockefeller Center 

vtx JOHNSON • t«mt MARTIN 

citH » HCIMienOI) • l.i M-6-M fitiiii, 
•.id llu tlTic Hell's bill OKiriirn Stiii Shaw 



S. J. GREGORY, General Manager 

Come To Britain In ’54 

Continued from page ' 3 

screen test, for instance, is an 
Edna Best. To disguise it still 
further, they omit the rhyme and 
tall it an Edna. This often leads 
to utter confusion in the Studios 
and explains in part why it some-^ 
times takes 20 weeks to make a 
British picture. 

L Poetic Or Gibberish ~| 

Cricket lingo is either inordi- 
nately poetic or gibberish. To 
howl a maiden over” does not 
mean anything like what it appears 
to mean. Few things in England 
A wicket is three sticks with 
a pc.q on top. On the other hand, 
a uickot is the grassy space be- 
tween two wickets. A pitcher is a 
bowler, but a bovvler is a derby. 
Ibc Dci 'by is a race, and it is 
Pionouncecl darby. 

f^he English are great admirers 
^ ,11( -'rican . slang. .'but even the 
cleverest of them cannot imitate it 
pci feci I v. They went mad about 
muon Kunyon some. 15 years ago, 
and Princess Margaret went to see 

“Guys and Dolls” three times last 
summer. One of their most pop- 
ular writers— who was also one of 
their worst — the late Peter Chey- 
ney,. got. his reputation by attempt- 
ing to use the; American idiom. It 
was terrible, full of reckons and 
gats and molls and get this, see? 

But some English slang is as 
terse and as effective, as American 
equivalents. I like . their words 
“smashing” and “smasher.” “Grav- 
elled” is as good as “browned off.” 
“Come off it” equals “be youi* age.” 
Cockney slang is even richer, and 
more comical; it is also practically 
unintelligible. Spelling it out pho- 
netically, as Dickens and Shaw 
tried to do, gives no conception of 
its variety. 

As for Gaelic and Welsh, they 
are distinct languages, still widely 
spoken. Irish Gaelic is, however, 
more alive than Scottish Gaelic. 
Cornish lias almost disappeared; 
it is. not Gaelic, and it can be un- 
derstood across. the Channel by the 
French. As for English,, there are 
as many accents as there are coun- 
ties. Yorkshire is different from 
Lancashire, and the, Somerset man 
sounds his r’s as sharply as they 
do in Ioway. 

British ailments are fewer and 

simpler than American illnesses. 
Everybody here seems to have had 
either gout or jaundice; A chill is 
the most common trouble. You 
can have a chill .on your big toe, 
your liver, your , nose, your lung, 
or all oyer. This doesn’t necessar- 
ily mean that you or your particu- 
lar organ quake from frigidity. 
What it does mean exactly I have 
never been able to find out. Some 
people go to bed when they have 
it, others don’t. When members 
of the Royal Family are indisposed | 
they are usually said to be suffer- ; 
ing from a slight chill. This alarms 
no one, j 

[" Beer What Ain’t Beer \ 

To the British, all American : 
beer tastes the same, and it’s not 
beer, it’s lager. The best restau- 
rants serve lager, but not beer. 
Beer is drunk in pubs, and it is 
bitter, ale or stout. Ale is pale, 
medium, brown or dark. If you 
just ask; for a glass'-uf beer in a 
pub, you’ll get bitter. And if vou 
want it cold, they'll put the ice into j 
it, if they have any ice. 

British money seems to be hope- 
lessly confusing to the American 
visitor, although really it is quite, 
simple. A pound is a quid. : A 
guinea is a pound plus a shilling. 
There is no such thing as a guinea, 
however, except when you buy 
something; you then find that your 
purchase: costs a number of shill- 
ings more, than you thought it did. 

A sovereign is a pound in the form 
of gold. It is worth more on the 
Continent than you can get for it 
in England, consequently there is 
a brisk manufacture of same in 
various cellars of France, and 
Italy. Any old gold will do, but 
the expert will always demand un- 
alloyed sovereigns. They are legal 
tender in England, but if you try to 
pass one they will ask you where 
you got it and'hmr'conreT - This is 

A penny is a large copper cart- 
wheel which wears holes in pock- 
ets. Hence, British pockets are 


better material than 

American pockets. Twelve .pennies 
make a shilling; A shilling is a 
bob. Two bobs make a florin, 
but you never sav florin and you 
never say bobs. You sav two bob. 
Two and a half of these bobs make 
a half crown. But there is no such 
thing as a crown in everyday use. 
If you had a pocketful of crowns, 
if there were any crowns, your 
pants would fall off. 

The British are very polite. They 
express their thanks on the slight- 
est provocation and in a dozen dif- 
rent ways. A few of them say 
thank yoii. quite clearly and unmis- 
takably. But the rest of them say:^ 
kew. think vow, thankenee.' 
thankee, hkyew, . kuesir, kewsa, 
kewmiun, kewmiss or ta. 

Come to Britain next summer. 
Xo Festival. No Coronation. And 
beef is back. 


Portland, Ore. 

Theatre row here has seen a 
number of major changes this past 
year. The 3,400 seat Paramount 
Theatre was taken over by the 
Portland Paramount Corp. , with 
M. M. Meshcr as president. Ever 

green's 1,500 seat Mayfair legit-pic . 
house was completely gutted with 
only four walls standing and next 
March will reopen as The Fox and 
the first theatre ever built actually 
for CinemaScope and stereophonic 

J. ^ Parker’s United Artists 
Theatre was shuttered for the 
summer but is now relit. Ever- 
green’s Orpheum installed the first 
local. CinemaScope followed by 
its Oriental. The Broadway js 
now? alsO C'Scope and Hamrick's 
Liberty follows this w'eek. 

Hamrick’s Roxy was rc-opened 
with a 25c policy. The Capitol, 
closed for several years, is now 
operated by John Becker with a 
glorified biirlesk policy phis tran- 
sient performers. 

Keith' Petzold took o\er the 
General. Managers post at Jesse 
Jones Circuit. Vet Thentroman 
Herb Royster became manager of 
t ! to B roa d wa y Thea and ' p ub- 
1 icity. director for the en lire a i n. . 



Forty -eighth p^fRiETTY Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 



During the period when Fred Allen , was making his 
most ambitious attempt to conquer television, I was invited, 
to be a guest oh his show. It was a fullscale, one-hour 
production and my role Was an extremely minor one — 

that of an author in one of the skits. 
I had approximately the same number 

» of lines that I normally use in order- 
ing a piece of pie in the Automat. 

I was told to report for rehearsals 
eight days before the show Was to go 
on the air. There would be, I was 
informed, eight solid days of rehear- 
sals and my presence would be re- 
quired at each of them. 

The first couple of days were easy. 
The company was broken up into lit- 
tle groups and assigned to different 

• — - — -rooms— in— tlie-Ga pitol, - Hotel— on— 8t lv 

H. Allen Smith AVenue, N. Y. City. We just sat 

ground, for the most part, and smoked and gossiped mid 
occasionally we’d "bunch- up around a table and play our 
Scenes by reading from the script. 

Along ‘about the middle of the week everyone assembled 
In the hotel ballroom, which was to be the scene of the 
remaining rehearsals. . I’ll . never forget that ballroom, 
Madness reigned in that big room. There .were actor? 
and announcers, agency men and agents, friends and 
relatives of the sponsor, production men, directors, cam- 
eramen. engineers, stagehands,, prop men, ^ girls taking 
notes, script writers,, guys with “releases for people to 
sign, bovs running coffee in paper containers, several 
men I judged to be psychoanalysts, singers, musicians, 
acrobats, a sports announcer, chorus boys, set-dressers 
and one small dog belonging to an. actress. .Oh. yes, and 
chorus girls— a couple of dozen of them. They wore 
leotards and while I noticed that nobody else seemed to pay 
much attention-to them, they served me as -a--constant 
source of distraction. They stood around kicking at 
things, or standing on their toes, or suddenly leaping into 
the air, Those leotards looked quite fragile, but appar- 
ently they are made of strong stuff, for not. a one of them 
ever split. I know. I was watching for it. . 

In the ballroom there were actually moments of com- 
parative quiet, when a scene was being rehearsed, but for 
the most part the place was a confusion of noises. People 
screamed in ariger quite a bit. There were several neai- 
fights. In an adjoining room the orchestra was boom- 
ing and blaring away most of the time. 

On the day before the show was to go on the air, all of us 
spent a good eight hours in that ballroom. By middle of 
the afternoon the confusion and tumult resembled one of 
those Union Square riots we used to have back in the 
■early 1930s, 

Vesuvius Erupts 

The director and his assistants finally got everyone 
quieted down and Mr* Allen took the floor with a couple of 
actors. They began playing their skit, perhaps the 20th 
time they had dope it. They seemed to be doing ail right, 
considering the fact that they were all colosally pooped. 
Then one of the actors faltered on a line, and the director 
spoke sharply to him about it The actor’s nerves cracked. 
He began screeching at the director. He used language 
that ain’t fitten. He said that the director was persecut- 
ing him. He said that he had been in show business when 
the director was studying short division in grade school. 
He said he had not only his agent but his lawyer in the 
room and dod-lam it, he wasn’t going to put up with this 
abuse one minute more. 'The agent and the lawyer came 
dashing into the scene. Uproar is hardly the word. 

“Now just a moment!’' howled the producer. - Let's 
not lose our heads!” He got the combatants settled down 
and began an impromptu peace conference in the middle 
of the floor. 

Fred Allen wandered over to the side of the hall where 
I was sitting. He looked haggard from loss of sleep, ner- 
vous tension and a sore throat. 

“What do you think of all this?’’ he asked me. 

“Very interesting,” I said. . “After yesterday’s session I 
went home and kicked my dog.” 

“You’ve only been through seven days of it,” he said. 
♦‘Wait till tomorrow. We start early tomorrow morning in 
the theatre and rehearse all day. About the time you 
usually have your dinner, we’ll be doing the dress. And 
then we go on the air and really bollix it up.” 

“Do you think it’s worth it?” 

“Certainly it’s worth it. We’ve got to think of the pub- 
lic. Tomorrow night we go on the air with all this won- 
derful, sparkling entertainment. Know what happens 
then? Out in Bucyrus, Ohio, a bald-headed little man 
wearing carpet slippers sits and stares at the screen tor 
about five minutes, and then he says, ‘That stinks!’ and 
gets up and flips the dial and spends the rest of the eve- 
ning looking at a 12-year-old English movie. Chin up, old 
boy! This is television!” 

The Way You Look at It 

A group of young actors were discussing TV in the 
. Lambs Club. They were panning the new medium, 
its demands were so exacting, not time to properly 
prepare and study a part, so many things in the 
studio to distract you, cameras continually moving 
from one end of the studio to the other, props being 
rushed from set to set. All this while you may be 
playing a difficult, emotional scene. 

I said, “Fellas, I agree with you bn every count. 
But two of you bpys have been made stars in less than 
a year. You have played to more people in a few 
weeks than Booth, Warfield, Sothcrn and Marlowe 
combined did in their entire lives. You can be up in 
the money in this medium in months, ihstead of years. 
The going has to be a bit tough. The law of compen- 
sation demands that. Let me quote from P. T. Bar- 
nuiii. He engaged a young giant for a sideshow. The 
boy was over eight feet in height and Barnum said, 
“Son, you are going to be mighty uncomfortable try- 
ing to sleep in a Pullman berth. But when we play a 
big city for a week and live in a hotel, you’ll have a 
lot of fun walking along the hall looking into people's 
transoms/’ Bert Lytell 




For what purpose TV? Like all new vogues, the busi- 
ness of TV suffers from the fact that it wanders o'ff in 
all directions; When I use the word “suffer,” I mean 
that only for the people who work in it, certainly not for 

audiences, as they get all . the best of 
it, for they can sit home with or with- 
out clothes, dependent upon the 
weather, do anything they like and 

■ for relaxation, fool around, switching 

WmWg.. programs until they get something 
that appeals to them, and the price is 
right. But the people who work in 
TV find that there is a great lack— 

nal? I, at the moment, am being spon- 
sored by four products and have en- 
George Jessel tered the television business exclu- 
sively for this year with this set idea — to sell the products 
that are paying me, for I believe that is what I am sup- 
posed to do. When the sponsor asks me to personally de- 
liver the commercial, I do it. When the sponsor tells me 
to take out some dialog or a q song to make room for the 
commercial, I do it. I also have no interference as far as 
entertainment is concerned, for my clients believe that I 
should know something about that part of it, having acted, 
produced and spoken publicly for more than 40 years, 
rather successfully. 

The average TV show doesn’t have that kind of mutual 
cooperation. The. sponsor’s idea is the same, to sell his 
■•wares.. Mo st of the actors continuously worry about the 
Criticisms of their close friends whowa'tch -them 'weekly.' 
This brings intimacy to such a high . point that people who 
like you personally and are close to you find it hax*d to 
laugh at your jokes every week and are bound to find 
fault with you. Then the actor and director worry 
about the weekly press, for every show is an open- 
ing night and most of the press treat a TV show in the 
same manner as they do a play, forgetting completely that 
there is about two days of rehearsal and four days of 
writing, whereas the average playwright may take two 
years to write his play, then, re-write it for six months, 
then rehearse it for more than a month. For example, 
Robert Anderson is having a deserved great success with 
his play “Tea and Sympathy.” I am told it. is his i.2ih 
play. This is the first one that ever got to first base. 
Both TV, radio and particularly motion pictures have been 
hurt by the press who, for years, have . been taking , the 
average picture apart, expecting to find the same kind of 
entertainment that is. created for the $4 literate theatre- 
goer to be presented, for the average motion picture price 
of about 45 cents. . The advertising agencies have only one 
idea in mind, the ratings and the surveys. 



Inadequate Sample 

In my more than 40 years as a public entertainer, serv- 
ing in practically every capacity except in the circus and 
burlesque,' I have never known .anything as inaccurate 
or completely cockeyed as those so-called popularity polls. 
These are based on a few phone calls in a few cities, never 
taking into consideration that there are thousands of peo- 
ple who can well afford to buy any product advertised 
and who, for one reason or another, have; unlisted, tele- 
phones. Thus, their opinions on what they like or dislike 
don’t seem to count. In .addition, there are many people 
who have no phones and whose opinions and preferences 
should also be polled. And the number of phone calls 
made by these pulse takers is ridiculously, small. They 
ring up a few people and then multiply their answers by 
something like 1,378.811. The result, they haVe you be- 
lieve, reflects the popularity of TV shows throughout the 

This is as if I were to ask three guys in New York’s 
garment center what they had for lunch that day. If two 
of them should answer, “we had chopped liver and on- 
ions,” the survey then would prove “that two rhen out of 
three in the U.S. eat Chopped liver and onions for lunch!” 

But don’t get me wrong; I have no personal beef in 
that respect. TV has been wonderful to me. I have a 
longterm contract with ABC; and have many other irons 
in the fire. I go into towns I haven’t been in for ages, 
and little boys and girls come up to me and ask me to 
call my momma. These kids certainly must be watching 
me on TV— it just can’t be that they remember me from 
“The Jazz Singer” 30 years ago! To show to what absurd 
degree this rating business can go to, the following story 
is the absolute truth. Some years ago I was engaged to 
do a weekly program, a commentary. The product was a 
beer called VX, The money was put up by the beer com- 
pany. given to an agency, the agency bought the time 
and my services for 13 weeks and I went on, but the beer 
was never made. Not one bottle was ever brewed. I went 
on every week and there were long arguments about the 
commercial. One day the agency almost came to blows 
over the following. Why say “Go to your nearest tavern 
for VX beer.’* Change it to “Run to your nearest tavern.” 
Another day there was almost blood spilled over this— 
Why should we say “This is as good as any Canadian Ale,” 
it’s better. We then added to the commercial that people 
should send in bottle tops and they w'ould win a prize. 
All this for a product that was non-existent, but the rating 
was good and to this day that, particular advertising 
agency gets calls for VX beer and are still fighting with 
me about some of the commercials. 

; Another thing that minds have to be made up about is 
the fact that TV is not the theatre or motion pictures and 
is hot related to these other forms in any way and I think 
that this Is a fact that must be definitely saluted because 
the greatest success on TV is Arthur Godfrey who, I un- 
derstated, has only been on the stage once, and I am told 
on good authority that he very seldom goes to the theatre. 

To. sum it up, my solution is watch the cash register. 
If they are buying the stuff, they are watching you.' 
That’s how the story is told, with cash on the counter not 
the fluctuating up a paint or down a point in the so-called 


Robert E. Lee Proveit changed outfits. He was trans- 
ferred from the New York office of the advertising agency 
to the Hollywood post. He had heard it was tough duty: 
you had to check in at 11:30 in the morning, you weren’t 

‘ allowed more 

than two hours 
for lunch at the 
B r o w n Derby, 
and if you left 
for your golf 
game before 2; 30, 
they got nasty. 
But Proveit was 
as tough as they 
come. He had 
once played trum- 
pet in a Major 
Bowes Unit, and 
he told himself 

he would take none of their lip. 

Walking down the hallway of the Equitable Bldg., he 
saw a scrubwoman who looked exactly like Frank Sinatra. 
.. He smiled to himself. It was impossible, of course. Yet, 
this was Hollywood — and anything might happen. 

He reported tp the man who was second in command, a 
sergeant to the West Coast Vice-President. The man 
looked exactly like Burt Lancaster. Of course, he was 
short and bald and fat and he wore thick glasses and had a 
little mustache and a pot belly — but otherwise, he was a 
dead-ringer for Burt Lancaster. This was Hollywood and 
anything could happen. 

•‘Proveit,” he barked, “the Head-Man Wants to see you 
right ’a Way. He wants to know just why you requested a 

“Easy,” Proveit answered. “1 was assigned to the Arthur 
Godfrey Show. Seven days a week. Eight hours a\day. 
AH that time I was being upstaged by a ukulele! It’s more 
than a man can take.” 

♦‘Godfrey takes it ! ” snapped the No. 2 man. 

“Like heck, he does!” Proveit retorted. “Do you know 
what he’s listening to on those headphones? NBC! He’s 
got too much humility to /listen to himself!” 

A buzzer sounded and Proveit was escorted into the 
Head-Man’s office. 

“Guess you’re wondering why we asked for you here 
when you requested a transfer, Proveit. Well, I’ll tell you. 
We found out that you’re a writer. And I’ve sworn that 
we're going to out-write every other agency in the busi- 

Proveit stood his ground. 

“I’m never going to write again,” lie said. 

“Oh, yes, you are, Proveit! Of course, our executives 
and sponsors know all about writing. Except how to put 
the. words on the paper.” 

“I’m never going to write again,” Proveit repeated 

“Then we’ll give you the treatment.” 

“Oh, no, you don’t!” Proveit said. “No treatments- no 
synopses, no plot-lines. I’ve turned in my stripes at 'the 
Radio Writers’ Guild.” 

“We’ll see about that,” the Head-Man leered. “Now 
report to the supply, room for a ream of carbon paper and 
don’t try to pad your expense account while you’re in my 
bailiwick! Dismissed!” 

As he walked down the hall, Proveit was sure that the 
girls who smiled at him were Deborah Kerr and Donna 
Reed. But he knew they were just stenographers. Yet — > 
this was Hollywood and anything could happen. 

♦ ft ■ ■ ' 

The next day all the writers in the outfit gaiiged lip 
on him. They moved their typewriters into his office and 
started throwing punchlines at him. It was almost more 
than he could take. 

One of the writers was working on a new panel show for 
TV: “Hubby Lobby,” in which you meet the husbands of 
women you’ve never heard of. 

Another writer was concocting a homey situation com- 
edy: “The Jukes Family,” the story of some healthy, nor- 
mal American morons. 

A jocular chap they all laughingly called “Shakespeare’* 
was writing the story of a typical teen-ager, “A Date With 
Juliet.” It was a million laughs. 

Proveit squirmed. He longed to spring to a typewriter 
and show them all what he could do, If he couldn’t come 
up with a bellylaugh, he whs sure he could belt out a few 
belly tears. 

He glanced toward a mirror. It was remarkable: he was 
beginning to look more and more like Montgomery Clift. 
He shrugged. Well, this was Hollywood — ’and anything 
could happen. 

* * * 

That night, at the New Senate Hotel, he told a girl the 
entire story. 

“I'll tell you, baby. I’ll tell you why I won’t write 
again. I was scripting this show, see? It was a great show. 
The words came from my insides. Tough, real talk. Man 
talk, Hard-bitten Anglo-Saxon words— like ‘the’ and ‘if’ 
and ‘but.’ Four-letter words. Like ‘what’ and ‘then.’ I 
was living! 

“You ought to get out of advertising, honey,” the girl 

“I’m a 30*year man,” Proveit said. “And I love it.” 

“Well, it doesntt love you,” she said. 

“This show?**neWid. “It was like my baby. But then 
we got the first raSing. It was the lowest rating in the 
history of radio or television. When we saw that rating, 
everybody in the agency went to Toots Shor’s and got 

“I understand-, honey,” she said, snuggling Up to him. 
“You don't have to write another line as long as you live. 

Just hold me close and ad-lib. Ad-lib!” 

There is a lovely legend in this city of magic, mystery 
and ever-wideriing screens, ii\ this city where anything can. 
happen, You take a bar of Ivory Soap and you drop it in 
the, bed of the Los Angeles River, which is completely dry 
10 months of the year. If the bar of soap floats away from 
you, you'll' come bach to Los Angeles some day . If. it 
floats, toward you, you’ll never come back. If it sinks, you 
gotta start thinking up a ichole new advertising campaign. 

Wednesday* January 6, 1954 

F orty-eighth 




& The 

A Brighter Tomorrow 



Once upon a time there was a writer in TV by the name 
if Sam. Any resemblance between Sam and any other 
writer in TV is not purely coincidental. Sam was a $100* 
'eek writer bri a comedy show called “A Date With 
Selma.” After four weeks’ work, which is really a “run” 
for the average pigeon* Sam was fired, Sam, being sen- 
sitive, planted an item in the trade papers that he had 
temporarily retired from the show, despite the anguish of 
the producer, tb write and produce his own TV package. 
His dignity was even more appeased when a few con- 
temporaries called to congratulate him. “Plug” salesmen 
started sending him their lists and Harvey Doolittle, his 
agent, whom he couldn’t contact by radar, called and in- 
vited him to lunch. These incidents and. the. passage of 
time caused Sani to completely forget that he himself 
had planted the item and soon he began to believe it. 
In fact he wondered who had tipped the papers off to' 
this top secret that he had even hesitated to discuss with 
his wife. So Sam got busy on the pilot. 

After much rewriting and polishing, Sam completed the 
pilot, lie called it “I Crave Selma.” It had a situation, 
domestic, comedy format, loaded with heart tugs that 
could be milked for laughs. Selma was a teenager, the 
oldest in a family of six brothers, two sisters and an 
adopted Korean , war orphan. Her mommy was a school- 
teacher and her daddy was a Judge who played a mean 
guitar. Selma was charming* wholesome, loveable, naive, 
and when the occasion arose, she could also be sophisti- 
cated and human. For a getaway bomb, Sam vi’rote her 
pregnant. Let’s face it! Sam had agency know-how. 

Sam, first released a few teasers to the press and then 
placed an ad in the newspapers under “Business Oppor- 
tunities” for a backer. Mr. Humphrey can’t give “E” 
bonds away, but eight normal business men answered 
Sam’s ads. After checking their financial statements 
and 'examining their personal references, he gave the 
nod to Mr. Kitty wake, a retired shoelace manufacturer. 
I’ll jump the gun to say that Mr. Kitty wake lost his 
money so fast, Sam never got to know his first name. 
When the package folded, Mr. Kitty wake was left with 
enough money to buy a pair of shoelaces and a vial of 

Harvey Doolittle, agent for $100 Sam the Writer was 
also agent for Sam the $40,000 package producer. He 
approached Sam the Writer with eyes blazing and fists 
clenched. Before Sam could open his mouth, Harvey 
. screamed, “So you want to hold us up!” Sam parted 
. his lips to breathe and Harvey added, “You won’t get it!” 
When Sam finally opened his mouth, he said, “I want 
400 a week and 50% of all rights.” 

“Over our dead bodies,” boomed Harvey. He smiled as 
he huddled with Sam the Producer. ' 

He spoWT softly. “Sam the Writer wants 300 a week 
and 25% of all rights.” 

"Offer him 200 a week and 2% of all rights/' countered 
Sam the Producer. 

Mr. Kittywake had just seen the completed pilot of 
“1 Crave Selma” for the first time and he was disturbed. 

“If this is supposed to be a comedy,” he asked^/’then 
why aren’t there any laughs?” 

Sam, a bit annoyed, replied, ''this isn’t a comedy until 
the laughs are dubbed in.” 

“Dubbed in? What’s that?” 

“Oh,” leered Sam. in. disgust, “Mr. Kittywake, you 
should never have left the shoelace business.” For the 
first time Mr. Kittywake agreed with Sam. 

+ * * 

Luther Peabody of Laughs, Incorporated, sold laughs 
hke Mr. Fulton of the fish market Sold halibut. The 
bigger the halibut, the bigger the price. Luther was once 
a janitor in NBC, who had more, than 20-20 tele-vision. 
While janitoring, he retrieved all the discarded recordings 
of boff radio comics that were dumped daily into the 
tiasli cans. These records lie stashed away in the attic 
of his home and When TV came into being, he resigned 
as janitor and started transferring the laughs from the 
♦ to ^ ape ‘ These rolls of laughter he called ‘‘laugh 
tracks.” For commercial purposes he classified his 
laughs under yocks (grade A and B), laughs (hysterical, 
sustaining and ordinary), laughs combined with applause, 
Shrieks, guffaws, giggles and titters. 

, ? or ‘T Crave Selma,” Luther offered Sam a package 
fleai of seven boffs, 40 assorted laughs and a “shriek” 
oei ore the closing commercial for 150. 

, /. arri hesitated. Luther steamed him. “That’s all I 
oeiiyer each week to sweeten ‘I Married Selma’ and look 
■« its rating.” 

_ Sam nixed the package deal and bought piecemeal. He 
niat e up a track of 5 “Bob Hope hystericals,” 6 “Red 
fiKeiton sustainers,” 3 “Willie Howard French Lesson 

neks, 4 "Jack Benny opening the vault bellies,” 
, Digger .O’Dell explosives,” 20 assorted “Allen’s Al- 

y guffaws,”; and 50 miscellaneous “Pick and Pat,” 
fi ’ nne Sah,” “Groucho Marx” and “Judy Canova” sure- 
^ added a smattering of giggles and titters to 
^ ,| lc , ate Hie straight lines. For this special, Luther 
in fi * Qr Sam offered him an equal partnership 

... • ® Package. Luther turned down Sam’s offer. This 

‘rp, l 1G ^ or Mr. Kittywake to sign his last check. 
r J le cities who saw “I Crave Selma” in the projection 

iiin in i S ? lc *’ “The laughs w'ere so loud, we couldn’t hear 
dialog.” • 

Wmt m plan ^d the following item In the trades: “Net- 
, a iP d a £ e fi ci es are bidding lively for ‘I Crave 
ii nr a r ’ H looks like the Ford Foundation will wrap 
11 up for ‘Omnibus’.” 

* * * 


It’s “Lucy” in the No. 1 spot; "Dragnet” inching; up to 
close the gap; Groucho Marx comfortably berthed in third 
position, with “Toast of the Town” climbing up to the No. 
4 spot as Colgate “Comedy Hour” is alternately up and 
down, depending on which comic goes into which segment. 
And keeping them steady— or fairly steady — company in 
tlie Top 10 bracket are such items as Milton Berle, Jackie 
Gleason, Arthur Godfrey, What’s My Line? Red Buttons, 
Bob Hope. 

Sounds familiar? You can bet your bottom Nielsen it, 
does. It’s the TV story, with blit minor variations, of ’51, 
and again of ’52, that carboned its way into the ’53 spec- 
trum and bids fair to plow uninterruptedly through ’54 
as an ever-hopeful, patient public and TV industry search 
in vain for even the slightest suggestion of an offbeat re- 
sponse to the inevitable “So-what-else-is-ne w'? ” query. 

What was new in ’53, unfortunately, wasn’t sufficiently 
exciting or imaginative in large enough, doses to balance 
the scales in TV’s favor. Not one new trend or pattern has 
emerged to warrant shouting from the antenna-congested 
rooftops. Particularly on the NBC or CBS video front* 
not a single new and vital personality has been projected 
to differentiate ’53 from ’52. Only the /‘New ABC,” 
revitalized by a $30,000,000 hotfoot stemming from the 
merger with United Paramount Theatres, embarked, after 
j ears of desperation and playing the fringe, circuits, on a 
carefully-plotted formula designed to bring some fresh 
programming elements into the video picture. This they 
did, as witness the emergence of Danny Thomas, Ray. Bol- 
der, Paul Hartman in freshly-tailored vidpix adornment; a 
major stake in the drama sweepstakes with the alternat- 
ing U. S. Steel and Motorola Tuesday night showcases, 
plus the all-cable Kraft 'Television Theatre (as distinct 
from the entirely separate NBC live-and-kine Kraft dra- 
matics) giving ABC access to properties banned on the 
NBC kinnies, Again it was ABC that put its: best foot 
forward in the quest for “tomorrow’s TV headliners” with 
its already-auditioned Joel Gray, Sammy Davis Jr. entries. 

But if, at the new year, there were still apprehensions as 
to whether ABC would make it as a Big Three contender 
in the highly-competitive video field long conditioned, to 
an acceptance of two— and only two— major networks, it 
was still too early to tell. A . lot depends on overcoming 
two major hurdles (1) “habit” (which has given the ABC 
comics much the worst of it thus far in the ratings returns) 
and (2) “facilities” ( which inevitably translates itself into 
an acceptance of ultra high frequency channels, on which 
ABC is; of necessity, so dependent as the network aligned, 
for the most part, with the third station in cities along 
the cable routes). Fortunately, the sponsors, with an 
awareness that the ABC obstacles can’t be licked in 13 Or 
. 26 weeks, are playing ball with the web. 

‘Abuses’ of 1953 

TV put on an extra-curricular show — “Abuses of ’53”— 
which didn’t particularly do credit to the medium and 
which now threatens to invite repercussions from the Fed- 
eral Communications Commission, the National Assn, of 
Radio-Television Broadcasters and other “watchdog” ele- 
ments. , 

Major “falling from grace” has been the wholesale disre- 
gard for NARTB-prbmuigated Code in regard to commer- 
cials. The double and triple spotting not only fore and 
aft but at the midway mark became so abusive that the 
NARTB was forced to incept jpolicing precautions before 
the squawks got out of hand. What the Code boys finally 
decide to do about it still remains one of the unanswered 
questions of *54. 

Similarly, the indiscriminate use of major stars to plug 
the client’s product, with practically everybody on the 
video spectrum shilling for the sponsor, has hit a new 
high in questionable taste; certainly a practice not con- 
ducive to elevating either the medium’s or the personality’s 
stature. It’s a far cry indeed, from radio’s heyday when 
the plug belonged to the announcer and the program to 
the star. The “hitch your package to a star” formula 
may be selling the goods, but it’s a body blow to TV’s 
prestige and the star’s dignity. 

Gen. Sarnoff & Bill Palcy 

h ivi* 1 ! 6 nex * Harvey Doolittle called Sam and offered 
hjs old job back at $90 a week. Sam took it. 

It’s become almost axiomatic in the trade that when 
broadcasting excitement and enthusiasm are at a low 
ebb “you can count on Gen. Sarnoff or Bill Paley” to 
come through. It was the electronic-minded Sarnoff’s “go 
TV” eight years ago that sparked the change of an indus- 
try’s entire future and incubated a whole new school of 
millionaires among broadcasters, just as it was “Paley’s 
Comet” a few years back that changed the entire intra- 
industry network picture and projected Columbia into a 
new sphere of importance. 

Thus it remained for RCA’s razzle-dazzle generalissimo, 
when everything in television looked; just, about as it did 
in ’51 and ’52, to shove the industry into the rainbow 
spectrum and officially inaugurate the era of color TV, 
True, the full fruits of Sarnoff ’s all-electronic wizardy 
won’t be realized in ’54 (those $800-$l, 000 price tags per 
TV receiver will obviously restrict output for at least 18 
months or two years) but there’s no denying that an in- 
dustry hemmed in by a long-existing status quo has once 
more been super charged with an electric excitement over 
the tinted prospects of tomorrow. 

Not that color, as such, will be the sesame to perfec- 
tion. There have been sufficient “screenings” of- tinted* 
shows todate to demonstrate that, no matter how brilliant 
or subdued the shading, it’s the program content (and 
notably the scripting) that counts, in the long run. Here,, 
indeed, was the major lack in a lustreless '53 semester 
which plunged some of TV’s top comics into pedestrian 
channels (with but a few. notable exceptions such as Nat 
Hiken’s scripting contrib for Martha Ray, Goodman Ace 
for Milton Berle, Sol Sacks, for “Favorite Husband” and 
Alan Lipscott for Danny Thomas’ “Make: Room for Daddy.” 

Perhaps of all the TV program categories, it was the 
dramatic presentation in its hour form that made the 
greatest strides toward maturity in ’53. It was. particularly 
evident in the Philco-Goodyear Sunday night “Television 



(Prodiieer-Director, r Show of Shows”) 

The screen grew radiant with color, There was Broad- 
way in the rain/ a sublime Broadway, a street of rich and 
romantic color tones, buildings to Comfort and enravish 
the eye and seen .in lovelier . perspective through the 

shimmer of silver rain. Here was a 
picture for Renoir, an inspiration to 
Keats-, an Occasion for strings. 

Broadway in the rain? Whereabouts 
on Broadway? Let’s cut back a few 
minutes to 5 o’clock on Dec. 5 and 
listen to Faye Emerson speaking from 
the stage of the Colonial Theatre: 

“This is a historic, occasion and we 
are all excited about it. This is the 
first time “Your Show of Shows” is 
being received in color as well as 
black and white.” : 

In the control room w’e look again 
at the flip card, Broadway in the 
multi-hued beauty of a gentle rain, that nourishes plants, 
cleanses pavements, cools the fevered brow and makes 
pedestrians joyous figures of carnival. 

Max IJebman 

‘Who Needs Color?’ 


Now the screen dims and the last darts of color creep 
off beyond the border and the rectangle is bright and 
empty. The dress rehearsal is over. The demonstration 
was a smashing success. Engineers, executives, writers, 
actors, producers, directors are dancing and cheering. 
Suddenly a voice comes over the loudspeaker. “Ready 
fbr cleanup notes for the: show!” The elation is gone, 
and dread faUs on the control room. The show ahead, the 
big show, the real show is two hours off. What a letdown! 
The millions in the boundless put there, they won’t see 
It in its rich dress of color, What will happen to us then? 

' Thought: “Well, who. needs color? The scenery de- 
mands more considered planning lest it war upon cos- 
tumes; and! costumes must not offend makeup or props. 
Camera rehearsals are endless. Four times as much as in 
black and white. Actors must arrive three hours before 
camera rehearsal to be made up. The playing area is 
cramped. Half as much space as before. No wide angle 
lens on the camera turret. Singers and dancers must 
shrink with horror from contact with the scenery. At 
least a six-foof breathing space should exist between the 
actors and the sets.” 

“And the tempers, ah, the tempers. ‘I can’t wear green. 
You saw me in green, Mr. Liebman, and gallant as you are, 
you couldn’t control that look of utter revulsion. Now 
you’/j asking me to wear green, it only means that you are 
sublimating your own taste to the caprices of a color- 
spewing monster which has no means of knowing how 
awful l look in green.’ 

“What new kinks will fret our rehearsals? What mad 
disorder of clashing hues will we find there? Is this 
progress worth the weariness, the fever, and the fret 
here, where men sit and hear each other groan?” 

You recall the first exhilaration of Broadway in the 
rain. The show-long elation. Color, we like you. Yes, 
we like you Very much. You're worth it. You’re beauti- 
ful; black and white— you're drab. 

Now it nears nine, and on leaden feet you go into the 
Control room for that pre-ordained letdown, till 10:30. 

The show is on! 

The monitor fills with dancers. Here are Sid Caesar and 
Imogene Coca, in black and white, divested of their splen- 
did raiment. 

But here is a new splendor, the audience’s laughter. 
Applause. Cheers. It swells and the black-and-white fig- 
ures need no other adornment. Into the control room 
you suddenly know a sense of group enjoyment out there 
that is something beyond color’s capture, beyond color’s 
power to help or hanri. 

Give them a show in black or white or sepia or stripe 
it with the whole chromatic scale, make it entertainment. 
Then you will have reaffirmation that not color, but your 
show is the thing, as always. 

A good show produces a device for color which /needs 
no authorization of the FCC. A device called rose-colored 

Playhouse” productions on NBC-TV, with producer Fred 
Cue’s stable of gifted writers achieving a consistently quali- 
tative level on a par with (and frequently topping) the 
contributions front other media. 

If, too, there existed some isolated instances to prove 
-TV’s potency as an exacting, exciting and enlightening 
facet of show business, one need only recall the memorable 
Ford 50th anniversary telecast; at least two “See It Now” 
offerings in which Edward R. Murrow distinguished both 
himself and TV in presenting the case of the Air Force 
vs. Lt. Radulovich/and the American Legion vs. the Amer- 
ican Civil Liberties Union; the return of George Axelrod, 
to TV w ith his -delightful “Confessions of a Nervous Man” 
on “Studio One,” the Orson Welles-sparked production of 
“King Lear” on “Omnibus;” U. S. Steel’s initial “P. O W.” 
entry of the season, etc. 

. From a quantitative standpoint, there’s no denying the 
major role and stake of vidpix in. the TV scheme as more 
and more sponsors embrace the celluloid formula arid the 
Hollywood TV film studios corner a sizable chunk ol the 
overall program schedules (both for syndication and 
network release). But judged on the basis of quality con- 
tent, vidpix as such poses no major threat to live ^pro- 
gramming. Most of them have been disappointing. True, 
such sponsor-happy entries as “Lucy,” Grducho Marx, 
“Dragnet,” Burns & Allen. “Our Miss Brooks,” etc., are 
major exhibits in the “spool school” of programming, but, 
unlike the bulk of celluloid product, represent a combma- 
tion of basic production-direction-writing-performmr 

Values completely divorced from the filming aspect. 




Wednesday, January 6, 1954 



(A Mike Mallet Mystery) 


The phone rang, jarring me out of a deep snoring sleep. 
I propped myself up on one elbow, rubbed my eyes, and 
stopped snoring* 1 lifted the receiver off the hook. Mike 
Mallet?" a voice whispered. “Yeah," I growled. “Trouble, 
Mike, bad trouble. Rusty Dails’ apartment, 260 West End 

' . . ' _ ■ — . i' r .l ft tV»II • 

the voice purred smoothly, “this is her brother, l snapped 
at the phone again, biting off part of the receiver and 
severing the connection. I swore and hung up, then 
grabbed some clothes out of the closet. 

I bolted down the stairs eight steps at a time and 
slammed the .door behind me. It was one of those crisp 
October days w ith the tang of danger in the air. I ducked 
instinctively as the first shot buzzed past my ear and 
grabbed my Browning 50-calibre, water-cooled machine- 
gun out of my shoulder holster. Another shot hit behind 
me, snapping a lamppost in two, and then I grinned. That 
cranky landlord of mine: He always gets mad when I 
slam the door. 

I got into my battered Chewy and did 245 mph all the 
way over to the West Side, it was one of those souped-up 
jobs and I got 15 miles to a gallon of Heinz. I saw 260 
West End Avenue on the corner of 83d Street and slammed 
on the brakes. The Chewy shuddered to a stop on 95th . 
Street, and I .walked back. 

I rang the bell at apartment 5A for 10 minutes and got. 
no answer. The door was made, of steel three - inches 
thick, but I kicked it in with one blow of my souped-up 
Florsheiips. What I saw inside made my stomach boil 
angrily. A good-looking hunk of blonde lying there in a 
pool ..of blood. I walked around to the shallow end and 
took a closer look. . There were three bullet holes and a 
sterling silver carving knife in tier back. I was baffled. 
Why the heck would a pfetty kid like Rusty want to com- 
mit suicide? . 

I dug a crumpled pack of Luckies out of my pocket ' 
and carefully tore the paper down one seam, noting the 
perfect cylinder of firm fresh tobacco. I chewed thought? 
fully and stood looking down at the blonde. Her blouse 
was torn and two of her ribs peeked out coyly. I pulled 
the knife out of her back and examined it closely. Who- 
ever knocked her off had certainly left a clue on the 
knife. All I had to do was. find a. guy named Tiffany. I 
didn't want to louse up the Police investigation, so I 
shoved the knife back in almost the exact spot I found it. 
Poor kid. I. put a pillow under her. head and scrammed 
out of there. 

/ ■ Short Rations 1 

I drove downtown slowly this time, keeping the speed- 
ometer at an even 125. I parked in front, of Police Head- 
quarters and walked past the poolroom and horse parlor 
to Pete's Bar. I called Homicide and told my pal Captain 
O'Shea to come on down for breakfast. James Aloysious 
Patrick O'Shea, a Hungarian who had changed his name 
for professional reasons, bulled his way into the joint a 
minute later and sat down beside me. I wasn’t really 
hungry but I ordered breakfast anyway.' A dozen eggs 
and a loaf of toast later I spilled the whole story to 

. “Darn it anyway,” he growled, “that’s the 15th killing 
this week. If it doesn’t stop, those darn muckraking news- 
papers are gonna start hollering.” I got some information 
from him but it Wasn’t much. Rusty Rails had been a 
model arid hadn’t been working at it very long because 
she’d only been arrested three times.' The agency she 
worked for was owned by an ex-racketeer named Lewellyn 
Van Farnsworth. I thanked O’Shea, shoved a handful of 
toothpicks in my mouth, and walked him outside. 

O'Shea was one of those old-fashioned honest cops and 
I could see that he was visibly upset by this latest killing. 
“What was that West End address again?” he growled, 

I told him. “i’ll send someone around later,’’ he said, 
helping, himself to three apples and a watermelon from a 
- fruit stand. “See ya around. Mike,” he. growled, affec- 
tionately rabbit punching me. I grinned and playfully 
kneed him in the groin. 

I piled into the Chewy and pointed it uptown towards 
the Van Farnsworth residence. I’d get. to the bottom of 
this or my name wasn’t Mike Mallet. I just didn’t like 
murderers, especially those that went around killing peo- 
ple. I parked in front of a big apartment house on upper 
Park Avenue and rode the elevator to the penthouse. I 
. rapped my knuckles on the door, just splintering enough 
wood to attract attention. An English butler opened the 
door in the middle of my rapping and got a busted monocle 
for his trouble. 

I was informed in a clipped Oxford accent that Mr. Van 
Farnsworth was not at home but that Miss Fanny Van 
Farnsworth would see me in the library. It was quite a 
layout. I wandered off towards the. library, at times sin k- 
. ing knee deep in the carpet. Moroccan bound classics 
from Vina Delmar to Jack Woodford lined three walls. 
The fourth Wall contained trophies, an elk’s head flanked 
by a detective named Clancy and a young Assistant D. A. 
whose name I couldn’t remember. 

I turned around to find a breathtakingly beautiful bru- 
net standing next to me. She was wearing a skin tight 
dress with a Saks 5th Avenue label. I wouldn’t have 
noticed the label except she was wearing the dress inside 
out. This dame had CLASS written all over her— twice 
on her forehead and six times on her body. 

I let my breath out slowly, blowing the drapes Off one 
window. “My name; is , . .” 

the butler to stop it but he waved me in again, I threw 
two short combinations end she went down hard. Luckily 
her fall was broken by a coffee table. I headed towards a 
neutral exit. “More, more," «he murmured, “I’m starved 
for affection." ■ . 

When I left the very efficient butler was tidying up the 
debris. I didn’t wait for the elevator this time. I just 
plunged down the shaft and hobbled into my Chewy. I 
headed across town impatiently leap-frogging over the 
snarled traffic. There was a little Irish model I wanted to 
see who might be able to give Out with some information. 
I found the name on the mailbox, Dusty Colleen. It 
wasn’t, much of a building; she lived in a fourth floor 

I.slid down the bannister until I found her apartment — 
Minus 4H. I rang the bell and walked in. I just stood 
there and gaped. Dusty Was at the door to the bedroom 
looking lusciously beautiful. She was Irish all right, with 
bright green, hair and large red eyes. It was a combina- 
tion that you don’t, see much of these days. She was 
wearing ohe of those short, low cut, backless things they 
Call a G-string. I could see she had nothing on under- 
neath it. 1 crushed her against my chest, feeling the 
excitement mount in me with the Sound of . her soft moan- 
ing and the crack of her ribs. 

I picked her up and threw her on the bed, \vatching her 
voluptuous, body gracefully flying the 20 feet through the 
air. Suddenly she screamed. I whirled around, my .45 
twisting and bucking in my fist. Nothing else happened 
though, because I’d forgotten to load it. A gun exploded 
three times in the darkness, a door slammed, and then 
it was quiet again. . Dusty’S large red eyes stared vacantly 
up at me front the bed. There were two neat little holes 
over her heart. I put on my jacket and headed, for the 
door. She probably wasn’t in the mood any more. My 
head ached dully where the third bullet had hit me in the, 
temple* I was boiling mad. A second killing and still no 
clue to the murderer. Then I saw a strange object lying 
on the floor near the sofa. I picked it. up and shoved it 
into my pocket. Suddenly all the pieces seemed to fit to- 
gether and I had a pretty good idea who the killer was, , 

I- got the Chewy started and jammed my foot hard on 
the accelerator. The car took off like a frightened rabbit 
and- minutes later I glided in for a landing and taxied to 
a stop. • I Shoved past the Van Farnsworth butler, sneer- 
ing at his new monocle shattered on the floor: The girl’s 
room was empty but there was a steady bubbling sound 
Coming from the bath. I pushed open the door. Poor 
little rich girl was floating face down in her champagne 

I grabbed the smooth English butler just as he Was going 
out the door with his umbrella. I laid the barrel of my .45 
. across his jaw and he fell heavily. 

“OK, you murdering rati start talking,” I snarled. He 
was dazed but still, conscious. 

.“The Van. Farnsworth residence, whom did you Wish to 
see?” he mumbled, 

.1 kicked him in the stomach. I should have suspected 
the butler all along. “You might have gotten away with it 
except you dropped this when you shot Dusty Colleen." 
I dug into my pocket and took out a half -eaten crumpet. I 
threw it down: beside him and sneered when he tried to 
crawl over and bite it, 

“Mike Mallet -is sehtencing you to death for murder," I 
snarled. The :45 roared once as I shot him in the middle of 
: his cravat. He was the perfect butler to the last, blotting 
with his handkerchief to keep his blood from soiling the 

“Will that be all, sir?" he asked I shot him again 
as he hummed a chorus of the “White Cliffs of Dover.” 

It was a cold Saturday night and I hunched my power- 
ful shoulders against the wind. I was sure going to sleep 
. dfll day tomorrow.. Back in my apartment I pushed open 
the door to my bedroom and stopped dead in my tracks. 
There w T as a tall curving blonde. 

“Dang it all,” I shouted, -‘There goes my Sunday." 

^ H’ya, Tootsie! 

“I don’t care,” she whispered fiercely, “take me.” 

“I'm here on business,” I scowled. She thrust her 
curves towards me. I dodged nimbly. Her firm, young, 
curving, jutting, soft body melted against mine, searing 

my H n T C b- twoed suit ’ My hands gripped her bare shoulders 
and l kissed her hard. Her lips were moist and, sweet and 
working hungrily. I pulled away and backhanded her 
across the jaw. “That’ll teach you to chew Tootsie Rolls 
when I’m kissing you,” I snarled. 

»^ h t e , 6 . ludd T h , et , se1 ^ against; me; her body hot, pulsating 
imd sUcky. I left-hooked her and she. fell back, knocking 

rlmo 1 !!l a f nd two , eas ‘ V chai rs * She S°t U p . at nine and 
came towards me, feinting with her hips. I appealed to 

u. By DANNY THOMAS — ■ 1 

I’ve been “in person” most everywhere but in my own 
home. My entire career has consisted of personal appear- 
ances. An entertainer’s lot can sometimes be an awful 
lot to bear when it comes to living that happily married 

life, bringing up children, and trying 

S ~ — j to play the role of husband and father. 

But that is show business. A life 
you can’t call your own. A series of 
m night club dates, theatre engagements 
m and charity benefits that seem to be 
fb trying their best to keep an enter- 
tainer tied up in knots when he tries 
to mentally argue the point of career 
versus family. 

With me it was no different from 
p the rest. We. all yearn for that stay- 
at-home booking. The one that sets 
Danny Thomas V°U U P as a Hollywood film star liv- 
ing in Beverly Hills where driving to 
the studio compares with the- executive making the trip 
from home to office. 

Or it could be that two-year run on Broadway in a hit 
show that allows for a season ticket to commute on the 
Long Island . Railroad. 

This year, that great playdate came to me in the mechan- 
ical medium of television, It’s a show called “Make Room 
for Daddy” which got its title from my own Wife, Rose- 
mary.. - 

As is probably the case In many families where the 
father travels on the road— selling buttons, girdles, 
dresses or, .as in my case, humor — the child, or one of the 
children moves in with mother while daddy is away. In 
my case, the kids not only moved ip with Rosemary, but 
they took over my dresser drawers and clothes closet. 

Then, when I would phone home from the east coast to 
say I was flying in that night, Rosemary would round up 
the kids, point to the dresser drawers and closets and say: 
“Make room for Daddy, He’s arriving tonight.” 

And that, too, was the true basis for the creation of my 
television show “Make Room for Daddy” which ABC-TV 
bought and immediately sold to American Tobacco and 
Speidel Watch Bands. 

Now I can have dinner at home every night and break- 
fast, with my. children in the morning; and for 30 weeks, 
at least, I can brag about being a family man, a home- 
body, a father, and a husband. It was show business that 
took me away from my home — but not for too long;, 




, Once upon a time there was a happy little comic who 
was always afraid that his rating would fall. Each month 
when rating day rolled around he became more nervous 
than ever. Then one day it happened. He was out at 
Lakeside playing golf when he heard a voice shout, “Fore!” 
Comedian Little gasped. Four! They must be talking 
about my rating, he said to himself in a panic. Four! 
The golf clubs dropped from his numbed fingers. He must 
see his agent at once! 

Twenty minutes later he parked his car in Beverly Hills, 
stalked , into his agent’s office and yelled; “The rating is 
falling!” . 

His agent wagent looked at him aghast. He could see 
his 10% slowly sinking behind the Bank of America. “Are 
you sure?" cried; agent wagent. 

Comedian Little sobbed. “It!s all over town. I just 
heard it on the golf course. What should I do?’’ 

“What should you do?” echoed agent wagent. “Do 
what everybody does. Fire your writers." 

“But I like my writers. They give me good scripts,’’ 

“That’S no excuse,” shouted agent wagent. ‘‘When the 
rating drops, the writers have got to go, Thus it has 
always been; and thus it shall always be.” 

■*/ . ■ ■-+ • * . ■-. . ■ 

Comedian Little and his agent wagent rushed over to 
talk to the writer whiter?. Tlie writer winters were stand- 
ing around the room writing next Week’s script on the 
wall. There was plenty of paper, but they liked to confuse 
the mimeograph department. 

“Stop,” commanded Comedian Little. “Stop at once. 
The rating is falling!” 

The writer Whiter? saw the accusing looks in the eyes 
of Comedian Little and agent wagent. “It’s not our fault, ’’ 
they answered, “It’s, pur director weetor. He couldn’t, 
direct Milt Josefsberg to a bottle of ketchop. It’s his fault 

that the rating is falling!” 

# ■ + * 

Comedian Little, agent wagent, and writers whiters 
rushed over to: talk to director weetor. Director weetor 
was busy casting. So they pulled the fishing rod out of his 
hands, and exclaimed, “The rating is falling!" 

“Don’t blame it on me," replied director weetor. “It’s 
producer wooser. It’s his fault. He couldn ? t produce a 
smile on Liberace.” 

* ■ * # 

Comedian Little, agent wagent. writers whiters, and 
director Weetor rushed over to talk to producer wooser. 
Producer Wooser was busy trying to cut down expenses. 
He was emptying his fountain pen into his. water cooler. 
On a close shot, this Would be the Blue Danube. 

“The rating is falling,” bellowed Comedian Little. 

“Don’t l°ok at me,” yelled back producer wooser. It’s 

the advertising wadvertisirig agency wagency.” 

. * . ■ * . * 

Comedian Little, agent wagent, writers whiters, director 
weetor, producer wooser rushed over to the advertising 
wadvertisirig agency wagency — Dancer Wanser, Fitzgerald 
Witgerald, Sample Warhple. 

“The rating is falling,” they, all screamed. 

The advertising wadvertising agency wagency was 
thunderstruck. This was only natural for they handled the 
thbnder account for the weather bureau. 

“Speaking off the top Of our heads,” they answered, 
“There’s only one thing to do. We’ve got to pay a visit to 
the Wise Old Owl." 

“The Wise Old Owl," the others all echoed in unison. 
Of course. That was it. She would know what to do when 
the rating was falling. 

* * * 

Comedian Little, agent Wagent, writer, whiters, director 
weetor, producer wooser, advertising wadvertising agency 
wagency all rushed over to the Wise Old Owh 

The Wise Old Owl was sitting in a wise old tree by the 
wise old brook with a wise old look on her wise old face: 

“The rating is falling,” they wept. “What shall we do?’’ 

(The Wise Old Owl sat for a moment in deep thought. 
She looked down at them, and asked, “Is your rating 
falling on Nielsen?” 

They nodded grimly. 

“Is your rating falling on Trendex?” 

They nodded again. 

“Is your rating falling on Tri-City?” 

On,ce more they nodded. 

“Aren’t you high On any rating?” 

Comedian Little replied, “There is one rating on which 
we’re No! 1. It’s called, the Cemetery Rating Service in 
Death Valley. “They contact two spirits each week 
by crystal ball.” . 

The Wise Old Owl seemed lost in thought once again, 
and then suddenly she pulled an egg out from under her 
and held it before them. “There’s your answer, boys," 
she said. She noticed, the puzzled looks on their faces, 
and added, “Not one of you saw me lay this egg. Right?” 

“Right,”, they agreed. 

“I kept it pretty well hidden, and out of sight. That’s 
what you’ve got to do. If. you’ve laid eggs with Nielsen, 
Trendex^ and Tri-City keep it a secret. In the words of 
my great-great-grandfather, Omar Owl, the sage of Griffith 
Park, ‘Post Sequitus omnibus ex laxitellus’.” 

They gasped, “You mean—?” 

“Exactly,” chuckled the Wise Old Owl. “Do what all 
the other shows do. Only talk about the rating that favors 
you the most,, and ignore all others,” 

Plenty In the Red 

Two Commies run into each other on Broadway* One 
Commie says, “Where are you going with the suitcase?” 
Boris says: “Going to Russia. It's wonderful there. YOU 
get anything you 'Want— wine, women. Why don’t you go 
w;ith me?” The other, guy says: “America is the best 
place. However, write me. If it’s good. I’ll come over, 
if it’s bad, I won’t.” So Boris says, “How can I write if 
it’s bad? The Russians will kill me.” So Igor says: “If 
it'S.gOod, write me in black ink. If it’s bad. write me in 
red ink,” 

Weeks go by and finally Igor receives a letter front 
Boris: “Russia is the greatest place on earth. Here you 
can get anything you want. You can get vodka, you can 
get caviar, you can get women. You cap get everything, 
but you can’t get red ink.” Joe E. Lewis. 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Credo In 


H mi limiiim Ilium Minim, hiibT.J 

Forty-eighth frgjgggyjr Anniversary 



Les Gottlieb 



(CBS Radio Program V.pj 

Situation comedy, according to such eminent research 
authorities as Oscar Katz and Harper Carraine, has always 
been the ingredient most likely to capture the maximum 
audience. Ever since Jack Benny launched his Maxwell 

and revealed himself as a penny- 
pinching pixie, the comic who devel- 
oped a running character and story 
has outlasted the lesssturdy monolo- 
gist or revue-type entertainer. . 

. But in 20 years of broadcasting, this 
'grim business of finding situations for 
our high-priced . performers has 
reached the danger point, hastened by 
the devouring casualty lists of TW 
I don't know if Messrs. Robinson, 

. Weaver, and Weitman have had time 
to explore this problem but they may : 
face 1954 without any “on-the-aic” 
work for their new crop of funny 

men. and women. 

To help them, I have had a pleasant but unrewarding 
chat with the 17. S. Employment Service, renewed my 
subscription to The Chief, and even sped through the 
Sunday book supplement of the Times in order to devote 
more time to perusing the situations Wanted Section. From 
A to Z> I have assiduously combed the various trades and 
crafts of our modern day world to find just one or two 
new jobs a comic might essay in situation comedy. The 
cupboard is bare. 

Just to underscore this frightening problem let us take a. 
brief, alphabetical look at all the occupations already ac- 
counted for: 

Antiques: Although, the late, lamented Luigi sold art 
objects, he also, covored all the jokes on immigrants, 
school teachers, Chicago, retail stores. 

Bartender: Ed Gardner mopped up. with this one from 
Palm Springs to Puerto Rico, but not enough to discour- ^ 
age Jackie Gleason, .1 Would say this field is definitely' 

Bus Driver: The aforementioned Jackie Gleason uses this 
job for the “Honeymooners” sketch. 

Comedian: Jack Benny clinched this one years ago, but 
..Danny Thomas hasn't let this bother him. 

Dancer: Ray Bolger. 

Dance Instructor: Kathryn Murray has a hammerlock 
hold here, although there are some who will contend this 
is not “situation comedy." 

Ectoplasm: The Leo G. Carroll-Ann Jeffreys-Bob Sterling 
“Topper” series indicate they have a ghost of a chance 
with this one. 

Fighters: Buttons, Skelton, Peter Lind Hayes have, from 
time to time, played this type, but can now expect pro- 
fessional competition from Rocky Graziano. 

Garment Biz: Jake Goldberg has this field all to himself. 
Housewife; Jean Carroll, Harriet Hilliard, Grade Allen; 
all play the better halfs. 

Investments : This was nice, virgin territory until Clarence 
Day’s .“Life With Father” preemed on CBS. 

Judge: Joan Davis’ breadwinner wears, the black robe. 
Kitchen Help: anyone is going, to dream up a 
better domestic than Beulah. 

Lawyer: Sam Aldrich is a. lawyer and an expert on plagiar- 
. ism. So be careful. 

Medicine: Dr. Christian an<J Dr. Kildare, are not exactly 
comics, but they’ll have you in. surgery if you start 
muscling in. 

Nursing: See above and to make it more difficult, rumor 
hath it that since nurses on this planet have been ex- 
hausted, one network is busy developing a Space Nurse, 
an atomic Florence Nightingale. 

Opera: Pinza tried this as Bonino. Anybody want to try 

Publicist: Colonel Flack has staked this one out all for 

Professor: Mr. McNutley (Ray Milland) and Ronald Col- 
man (Halls of Ivy) go for academic laughs here. 

Money Can Be Fun 

Quizzes: Not necessarily situations but see Todman and 
Goodson under* M for Millionaires. 

Rhumba Band: Desi Arnaz conga’d this one into the upper 

Secretary: My Friend Irma, Meet Millie, Private Secre- 

Teacher: Our Miss Brooks, Mr. Peepers. 

Unstated: This is wide open. There are certain situation 
comedies where the audience is never told, just what in 
hell the star does to earn his keep. (My Favorite Hus- 
band, George Burns, Ozzie Nelson, etc.) 

Ventriloquist: Jimmy Nelson, Edgar Bergen, Paul Win-- 
, c hell. Also puppets like Kukla and Ollie, the Bairds. 
Woodwork: The papa on “Mama” is a carpenter, 
routh: - Junior' Miss, Corliss Archer, My Little Margie. 
Zoology: Zoo Parade has a corner on all our furred and 
leathered friends; * 

As you will note only one letter in the alphabet— X— 
remains Wide open. A check of Webster’s finds six occu- 
pations under this classification: 

Xaverian: Jesuit missionary priest; X-Ray technician: 
one skilled in the use of X-Rays; Xylophonist: one who 
ptays the xylophone; Xylographer: wood engraver; Xylol- 
e xpert in woods; Xylotomist: one who prepares 

wood for examination by microscope. 

bhm pickings?^ Well, frankly, I just can’t picture Jerry 
ester or Jan Murray as Xaverians, but how about a story 
J" out A an xyloIo gist ? Who’s available? Morey Amster- 
am, Al Bernie? Wait a minute. What about Jack Garter? 
e s young, he’s talented, he projects. Listen to this, 

} S, 

* s a xylologist (that’s a wood expert, schmo). 
j s b( ? ss gets a big order from a ventriloquist to make 
nvi?.? les lor . the Christmas season. Jack has to work 
Tivi . His wife Wants. Jack to ask the boss for a raise, 
„ .^..decide to have the boss over to dinner. But they 
iicLi u ■ a : es mixed up, then the wood for the dummies is 
q b V jmstake for the fireplace arid. ......... . . 

oee what I mean? It’s gonna be a tough season. 

The Task Ahead: Making TV The 
^Shining Center of the Home’ And 
ling Create A New Society 
of Adults 

Pat Weaver 


(NBC President) 

I believe broadcasting, that is, radio and television, 
Will prove to be the most important communications devel- 
opment in human history, after the. development of lan- 
guage. I formerly believed that the invention of print was 

comparable in importance, but as time 
goes on and one begins to perceive the 
future implications of the entire com- 
municatioris pattern of services that 
will emerge from broadcasting, arid 
the power to create a new world im- 
plicit in that pattern, then one begins 
to be even more dramatic in one’s 

When broadcasting is examined by 
people who generally make little use 
of it, it runs into violent handling. 
Nonetheless, if those critics of the 
service live in multiple-channel arid 
multiple-station markets, like .New; 
.York, then selective choosing of radio and television serv- 
ice, almost, around the clock, will give any individual a 
more complete arid more valuable aggregate of informa- 
tion, insight, cultural opportunity, and entertainment than 
is available in any other phase of communications — printed 
media, theatre, motion pictures. In New York, of course, 
we have: fine music available almost continuously. We 
have coverage of the UN in session, arid other sendees 
not normally, available. The full output of four television 
arid four radio networks complement the local product, 
and in those schedules there is far more than escape and 
diversion. Arid even in the escape and diversion, at NBC 
in any event, the producers of inost programs suitable for 
the purpose, are constantly vigilant to choose those sub- 
jects and those characters which will serve to illuminate 
the problems of our times, and the character Of our funda- 
inental beliefs. In enterainment, they are alert to the 
opportunity ever to broaden the appeal of the theatre arts, 
the fine arts, and the arts of living itself. 

Nothing is easier than to quote our aspirations and direc- 
tions in this area and review the latest slapstick comedy 
simultaneously, to indicate a lack of integration between 
purpose arid program. But in our records we are demon- 
strating that our shows can serve purposes beyond diver- 
sion, arid that gradually we are gaining a deeper feeling of 
obligation on the part of the elements in the industry for 
the tremendous influence we know we have on viewers 
and listeners. 

World One Small Town 

It Takes Vast Resources 




Basic to the reasons why we believe in broadcasting’s 
impact, is the knowledge that we are making the entire 
world into a small town, instantly available, with the lead- 
ing actors on the world stage known on sight or by voice 
to all within it. This creates a situation new in human his- 
tory in that children can no longer be raised within a fam- 
ily or group belief that narrows the horizons of the child 
to any belief pattern. There can rid longer be a We-Group, 
They-Group, under this condition. Children cannot be 
brought up to laugh at strangers, to hate foreigners, to 
live as man has always lived before. 

And this points the way to the opportunity of television 
to create a world of adults, instead of bigger children. Our 
world in electronics is extremely small, and the knowledge 
that all children will be citizens of it does riot disturb most 
of us, even though we recognize that change will be nec- 

This, of course, makes it most important for us in our 
stewardship of broadcasting to remain within the “area of 
American agreement,” with all the implications of that 
statement, including however some acknowledgment in 
our programming of the American heritage of dissent. Be- 
cause we in broadcasting generally operate as communica- 
tors, we have not been as perplexed by the problems that 
this situation creates as we may be in the future. We are 
newsmen, information relayers, the presenters of people 
of all kinds who have all kinds of opinions on all kinds 
of things. Our use of the medium to attempt to influence 
opinion, as newspapers do in their editorial columns, has 
been sparing. We recognize of course that selection is 
itself a responsibility, but generally the record of broad- 
casting has been excellent in this respect. 

This fact also points the moral to those American fami- 
lies who do not wish to participate fully in the general area 
of American agreement, for they must designate broad i 
casting use to their children, even as they now do book 
selection, picture going, theatre going, and other experi- 

The great network operation that can help Create a new 
society of adults over the decades ahead must do so with 
tremendous resources. It must not allow a degeneration of 
its service so that the television-radio set becomes an 
amusement box. To us at NBC, the set must become “the 
shining center of the home.” And this it can be, with color 
and magnetic tape, with world wide news service, sym- 
phony orchestra and opera companies, 
of still undreamed magnitude, with entertainment that in 
part becomes highly literate, that serves every segment 
Of our population with programming that is valuable and 
rewarding. » 

This means building a business; with a very high gross 
income, and a high profit potential. For it is only when 
one has a rich, prosperous business that one can afford 
to expand the elements of public service, arid that one can 
afford general activity for program improvement not im- 
mediately indispensable to commercial Success, 

To be able to afford the great network service, and real- 
ize the potentials of televisiori, calls for building an opera- 
tion that differs from the former radio network operation. 

I don’t recall what the occasion Was but somebody sent 
us a bouquet of flowers. . Mama gasped when we opened 
the long box. There, wrapped in green waxed paper, were 
two dozen roses in. a forest of ferns. 

There were tears in her eyes as she placed the roses 
one at a time into a water pitcher with a slightly chipped 
handle. She smelled each flower individually, inhaled the. 
perfume deeply, and held her breath for a moment in 
order to saturate her senses. 

Then, as one under a spell, she walked slowly into her 
bedroom. When she came out again her hair was combed 
and she had. on a new dress. The tone of her voice was 
subdued. She even asked me to please run down to 
the grocery store for an eighth-of-a-pound of pot cheese 
■‘from today.” 

The thrill of live roses in the house was too much for 
one person to bear; Mama picked out three of the long 
stemmed beauties, added a few ferns, and sent them to 
the next door neighbor. 

As each one of the children came horn e from work the 
same scene was enacted over and over again: “Hey, 
where did these come from? Ain’t they gorgeous?” 

“Don’t, touch,” mama said, “just smell.” : 

And smell we. did. All evening long we kept pushing our 
noses into the flowers until we smelled like roses and the 
roses smelled like us. 

As the days passed the flowers began to fade and mama 
began to philosophize on how human beings were like 
roses, and how soon we all wither away and die. 

Finally, each kid folded a rose between the pages of a 
book. • 

. Mama went back to chopping liver, arid she stopped say- 
ing “please.” 

Even today the support of the great companies that basic- 
ally financed the radio, networks would give only a fraction 
of the resources necessary to network operation in tele- 
vision. Thus NBC-TV has from the beginning made 
efforts, to broaden the base of support and get the re- 
sources on which to build the great network service. 

But there was another phase of planning for the new 
patterns in television (and which is just as necessary in 
radio), that became apparent some years ago. Broadcast- 
ing has built its success in many wavs, but the measure- 
ment of circulation in radio got into certain ruts, notably 
concentrating on per program ratings which influenced 
the development of radio use without most advertising 
people fully understanding what was happening. Because 
riaost agencies were run by men brought up on printed 
media during the 30’s and even the 40’s, radio had a bitter 
fight at the agency level for equal treatment .with print. 
Media and research activity was directed largely by men 
not entirely sympathetic to. radio, or so it always seemed 
to me. 

It is human, I suppose, to concentrate on what you have 
and how to improve that, instead of thinking about what 
you really want, and how’ to get it. Now most radio opera- 
tions were built up with certain habits of use and pro- 
cedures that the agencies and clients finally got com- 
fortable with, and when television came along, they wanted 
those same known values because that seemed the. j way 
least likely to shake their known security. It was and is 
hard to get a fresh approach, to sell goods and services on 
the most efficient basis possible. 

But in our NBC-TV planning we recognized that what- 
ever the wishes of the individuals and companies trained 
in radio, that great network service television could only 
be offered under a new; plan, and that welhspent adver- 
tising dollars should not be focused by single companies 
against single audiences. There are the great hit excep- 
tions of course, but this brought up another point. A Col- 
gate Comedy Hour (originally co-sponsored with Frigid- 
aire), was great value for the several products that could 
reach big weekly, huge monthly, and unbelievable seasonal 
audiences cumulative Nielsen last season), and 

therefore it made sense to allocate the time among, an 
advertiser’s ow r n products if it could be afforded. But this 
also means that several independently-owned products can 
and Will pay far more for the opportunity to reach the 
same audience than would a single company, because it is 
actually more valuable to the smaller companies. Small 
companies never had exposure to the great nighttime, all- 
set, all-family circulation of the radio hits, and they got 
their first opportunity in television on NBC. What hap- 
pens when the tremendous audiences are given the word 
on a product that has real appeal in “nightime attraction” 
television is known to most of my readers. The values 
explode the business. And once we have taken the impli- 
cations of that and organized for it so that all American 
national advertisers are consistently called on with a con- 
sistent message of how broadcasting Is best used by any 
group of products, within the fantastic mosaic of usages on 
a well-planned broadcasting service, we will have support 
for our industry that beggars the past. 

Buying Frequency 

When buyers of “impulse” products with low brand 
loyalty can buy frequency and repetition across the week; 
w'heri small products can combine in related product adver- 
tisements to be placed against proper audiences; when 
research profiles audiences at given periods, with audi- 
ence composition and definition analysis; when no cam- 
paign breaks Without special broadcasting campaigns that 
go into selling-in-depth and other modern marketing con- 
cepts— when these and many other planned steps are taken 
in network broadcasting, then we will have a healthier 
business that delivers more effective circulation at lower 
cost, a Wider range of uses to meet a wider range of adver- 
tiser heeds; and resting on our prosperity will be a pro- 
gram service that fulfills the potentials of broadcasting as 
a civilizer as well as an entertainer and as a salesman.. 

Because the need of the nation is for the great network 
service, it Will be a cause for real concern to opinion 
makers in this country if the short-range objectives of any 
group force television into a fragmentized service. Fres* 

(Continued on page 104) 




Wednesday, January 6, I954 

Life With Father - - TV Style - - Greatest 
Libel Ever Committed On Man 



This may be taken as a solid ef- 
fort to register a very strong beef 
against the way any number of 
television shows, of the type known 

as “f a m i 1 y” 
or “situation- 
comedy, ’* per- 
sist in por- 
t ray i n g a 
group who 
comprise the 
very spine of 
our society, a 
group that is 
the' s 0 lid 
corps of our 
culture, a 

,, group without 

Carrel Carroll .* ho ' w , fven 

Motherhood would vanish from the 
wholesome American That 
group is The American Father. 

There is no real reason why I 
should appoint myself - the defend- 
er of The American Father and 
ambitiously, graciously and self- 
lessly assume the dangers, fears 
and panoply, of a warrior in his 
behalf. Yet. in the absence of any 
other vo'unteers. willing to do bat- 

the hearthstone, the Gallup of su-* 
burban domestic relations. This is 
by no means the case, ;I . just 
Watched television for a few nights, 
and the result of this watching 
would seem to indicate that per-, 
haps Christine Jorgenson, nee 
George, was doing some pilot- 
thinking when he abdicated from 
The Masculine Sex. 

Clearly men are going downhill 
to, nowhere; at least nowhere that 
looks like any desirable place 
to a dispassionate, impartial w atch- 
er of television families in action. 
TV's tawdry little evaluations of 
the family-life that is the backbone 
of any nation; TV’s dreary little 
skirls on the doodlesack of domes- 
ticity; TV’s weekly sackings of the 
sacred sanctuary of tomorrow— the 
American home— cart lead only - to 
one rational conclusion. The rule 
of The Amazon is nearer than . We 
think. . • - 

Alan’s Inhumanity 

t’e in defense of t-h’S'. obviously 
set-up Neb. I'm moved to rivet on 
my battered old college armor; 
rummage through the hall closet 
for the engraved mace I -u«ed so 
successfully in the varsity j ovists, 
and enter The List* for the Little 
Man Who so:s to work everyday- 
laden with errand*, and a slight 
cold — earns a living, buys a home, 
dresses, his wife and children.’ and. 

• himseh’. wears - his - old ~?uit-- two 
years too long in order to provide! 
some insurance as a hedge against j 
his sudden withdrawal from .this 
veil of smog.- Fd do as much for ; 
a dog. But dogs don't need mei 
Dogs have the ASPCA. The Amer- ; 
ican Father has no such sturdy. 1 
backing. He is a “loner." a soli- , 
tary little understander in an : 
acrobatic act called “The Family.” : 
bearing on his patient shoulders 
■not., .only the pyramided dead-, 
weight of innumerable top-mount- 1 
ing “dear ones," but. also, the salty 
irritation of national ridicule. 

It's hard to understand why this 
is,, in view of the fact that most of 
the television material is written 
by men. It’s difficult to explain 
their mass masochistic attack on 
their own gender. True, the Writers 
of every television family series 




LExington 3.-ii00. . 

demic of Gracie Allens. It is re- 

Dr. ,A. N. Goldsmith 

are. theoretically, appealing to the ; covering from, a bad attack of Cor- 
vanitv 'and cupidity of tHe. distaff | n S s Archers and a severe case of 
division of bur civilization. But i Henrv Aldriches. But can it fight 

how long will it be before all wom- 
en rise up in resentment against 
the implication that they have been 
foolish enough, or bat-eyed enough, 
to accept as their life’s companions, 
creatures of as little wisdom, skill, 
wit or talent as the ones they see 
I de picted-,; to Jbe ..the., t yp ical • specie- 

off the psychiatric dangers inher- 
ent in the premise that every 
American Father is a Pea-Brained 
Booby the moment he leaves the 
mysterious fastness of his office 
i and. enters his home, the edifice in 
which he should be master of all he 

, surveys? : How’ can a man be a suc- 

father on our country s television- , cessful comedian and a cornball 
screens. father? How can a man be a wise 

Is it not possible that the spuri- and reputable judge and a jerk- 
ous characterization of Father as | husband? You can go right down 
The Eternal Knucklehead by al- the line of trades, professions, 
most all the Family-Type shows on skills and arts and in each find 

TV could be. in a subtle way. un- 
riernvmng the. basic social struc- , 
ture? For this treatment tends to. 
build up in. men a resentment 
against women that — if carried to ' 
its ultimate possibility— could re- 
sult in race suicide, while, at the 
i same time undermining women’s 
! own confidence in themselves by 

showing them in close alliance — • 
To take it from the. top: the na-... no t t 0 say in love— w ; th the variety 

tional attitude toward Dad today 
is as different as that taken toward 
his opposite number, Mom, as 
Winston Churchill’s speech, coun- 
try. appearance and politics con- 
trast with those of Geocgi Malen- 
kov. In case this fails to make my 
point, there is as much difference, 
in the way Mother is portrayed be- 
fore the bar of American justice, 
and the treatment accorded to 
Father, as there i c — to quote a 
score of bores— between day and 
night, black and white, wrong and 
right or Amos and Andy. 

Mom is the all-knowing pur- 
veyor of good-counsel, the mag- 
nificent solver of the insoluble, 
the benevolent dictator— interested 
onlv in the greatest good for the 
greatest number, the supreme ar- 
bitrator. the grand jury, the box- 
ing commission, the FCC and 
Marilyn Monroe all rolled into one. 
While. Dad? .Well, Dad is just 
rolled. Generally by Mom. 

Dad a Real Gone Dummy ! 

Dad is the know-nothing, who 
supplies the loot that buys the gro- 
ceries. Dad is the Dunderhead who 
.monthly meets the payments on 
the first and second mortgages. 
Dad is the Dope who does the 
dishes in the evening because all 
h? does all day is sit in a quiet 
office. Pop is the mental-pauper 
whose every gibbering effort to 
make sense at family discussions 
meets with hoots of derision from 
the newest and tiniest member of 
the domestic circle. There is little 
that this poor “rioodnick” can un- 
derstand. He can easily be made 
a dupe by either of his teen-aged 
children; and his wife, in con- 
spiracy with the merest pre-pubes- 
eent toddler, can best him at any 
battle of wits. In fact, Mom is 
always blueprinting some cul-de- 
sac into which poor old Papa can 
topple to his embarrassment— gen- 
erally financial. Pop, in short, is 
always “Target for Tonight.” 

Anyone interested in my authori- 
ty for these sweeping statements 
might assume that I had just com- 
pleted an elaborate survey of the 
American home; that. I had, in ef- 
fect, become the Dr. Kinsey of 

of Kronk-Konk the average man 
turns out to be on TV when he en- 
ters his home and answers to the 
name of Father. 

In great concern I view this pa- 
rade of farces that, depicts the 
breadwinner as merely a crumb, 
the medicine man of the family as a 
little pill, the family’s big wheel as 
a flat tire. 

The nation has survived its epi- 

some TV father who earns enough 
to keep a pleasant roof over his 
brood, but hasn’t enough stuff be- 
tween his ears to help his kids 
with their home-work. solve some 
minor problem for his wife, turn 
on the electric light, use the tele- 
phone,'- make a simple logical der 
duction, ask a sensible question or 
perform any variety of casual do- 
mestic task without causing flood, 
fire, disaster and frequently threat 
of divorce? 

I predict that the first good, solid 
domestic of family-type situation- 
comedy show that hits the TV net- 
work, in which the father, as well 
as the mother, are depicted as pos- 
sessing all their marbles; and in 
which the progeny behave as intel- 
ligent off-spring of this happy as- 
sociation of two rational people. 



There may be people afraid of succeeding In UHF, television. Th ev 
needn’t be. Here are some simple rules which should positively ensure 
failure. They’re as reliable as the usual methods of making enemies 
and annoying people. 

Of course, to succeed in UHF-TV disregard these 
rules. In fact, the opposite should be done. But 
there .are the rules for making a mess of a UHF- 
TV venture. 

First locate your Station in very mountainous 
country. . Place the station down in a valley 
around the corner from any populated area so that 
it is thoroughly shielded. Never place the station 
in generally flat country, or in a high spot over- 
looking such country. 

Select a locality in which there are many high 
steel buildings crowded together around the sta- 
tion in locations which will shield the waves from 
all the homes in that neighborhood. Avoid 
placing the station in a town mainly having 
wooden frame buildings, 

Put the station to one side of the cluster of homes to be served; And 
preferably loeate it at a low point from which none of the receiving 
aerials can be seen. Avoid a good central location in the middle of the 
residential area. And be sure not to place the transmitter aerial on 
the; top of a high tower overlooking that area. 

Be thoroughly penny-wise. Select the lowest power transmitter 
which any manufacturer can provide; In this \vay you can be sure 
that only weak signals will be received vvith considerable noise and 
blurring of the picture. High power transmiters which will produce 
strong signals and clear pictures should of course never be selected: 

In picking a town and a location, select one Where the population is 
scattered over an ernorhious area with only one or two houses per 
square mile. Further, pick a place for the: transmitter where the houses 
are farthest apart and far away from the transmitter. Concentrated 
population near the transmitting station is very objectionable, and might 
even lead to financial success. 

Also, select a City which already has a number of well established 
VHF stations and a powerful competing UHF station as Well. Above 
all, never go into a town Where there are no stations or only UIIF sta- 
tions. Serious competition can ensured. 

j : ' '' . , : V— — HF; Have Fun : . ■ f 

Of course poverty-stricken localities With few people and little pur- 
chasing power, are always desirable as UHF location. Since advertis- 
ing in' such a neighborhood cannot bring results, the advertisers will 
avoid your new station and thus ensure failure. 

Network affiliation should be definitely avoided. If it is available 
in the town you have selected, better try another place. The outstand- 
ing network programs might please your audience, build up your busi- 
ness,, and force success on you. 

In going into any neighborhood, be sure that no one of your staff or 
management is known to any of the local people. By forcing strangers 
on the population and. by keeping aloof from them, dependable antago- 
nisms, can be created. This is always helpful in leading to failure. 

It is of course important not to have sufficient funds available even 
to complete the station. But if this cannot be done, at least avoid hav- 
ing' any surplus funds to Carry, the station over the initial buildup period 
and to provide for unforeseen emergencies. Since emergencies gen- 
erally arise, lack of reserves is a dependable way of achieving bank- 

By following all of these rules, completely and faithfully, failure is 
certain. But one warning must be given. If these rules are disobeyed 
-^or even if the opposite is done — success is likely. Planners of UHF- 
TV stations are cautioned accordingly. . 

will get such a high rating the 
show will have to go off the air 
either because the sponsor won’t 
dare monkey with the format for 
fear of spoiling the rating, or be- 
cause the rating is so high the show 
sells so much merchandise the fac- 
tory can’t fill the orders. 

***Jm„.' - 4 "m 

WWVW' - " \ 'S' 

- : , 

'W? y , ,, 


A station advisory board to 
help set policy on a strengthened 
“Crusade for Spot Radio’’ has been 
established by John Blair, prexy of 
the Station Reps Assn. At the 
first meeting of the new boat’d 
skedded for Jan, 12, a key item on 
the agenda will be a proposition 
that, the “Crusade”— -aimed at up- 
ping spot radio biz— -incorporate, 
in which case the advisory group 
will become part of the corpora- 
tion’s board of directors along 
with the present directors of SRA. 

Advisory board consists of Harry 
Burke, KFAB, Omaha; Robert B. 
Jones Jr., WFBR, Baltimore; Les- 
lie L. Kennon, KWTO, Spring- 
field. Mo.; Richard H. Mason, 
WPTF, Raleigh; Philip Merryman, 
WICC, Bridgeport; William B. 
McGrath,. WHDH, Boston; Charles 
F. Phillips, WFRL, Syracuse; Odin 
S. Ramsland, KDAL, Duluth, and 
Ben Strouse, WWDC, Washington, 
D. C. 

Fremantle’s Chiller 

With Spanish language a grovv- 
ing factor in American broadcast- 
ing, Fremantle Overseas Rad io» 
which produces a Spanish version 
of “Superman” for American ana 
Spanish markets, has come out 
With a half-hour mystery senes 
starring Arturo de Cordova. _p c * 
ries, “Los Perseguidos” (“The Per- 
secuted”), consists of 13 open-end 
half-hour shows adapted from 
scripts by Lawrence Klee, ana 
stars de Cordova as player ana 

host. . , . j 

Fremantle’s soaper series b a sea 
on Mexican films, “Cinta de Plala 
. (“Silver- Screen”), , has already 
been sold to WHOM, N. Y. 

Wednesday* January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth j 



Biz Poses Multiple Problems 
Will Come Some Clear - 

ix Impresarios Are Confident That Out of ’54 
Patterns And A Plushy Future 


(Editor's Note: The following article was contributed by 
Mr. SamOff while he was serving as NBC vice presi- 
dent in charge of the Film Division. He has since 
been elected, executive V.P. of the network.) 

Just is in the early days of motiori picture industry, a 
few major distributors and producers arose from the con- 
fusion to give it stability, so in the present early period 
of him syndication stability is coming front organizations 
which are willing and able to assume responsibility for 
programming of quality, and to meet the complete needs 
of broadcasters, advertisers and the public. 

A successful syndicator will be one to whom local sta- 
tions and advertisers can turn for a variety of program 
needs and the multiple services that have become an 
integral part of programming supported by the advertising 

dollar; A successful film syndicator, 
in the final analysis, must combine a 
thorough knowledge of broadcasting 
With a deep-seated sense of service to 
the public. 

A year ago there were 110 TV sta- 
tions in 64 cities. Today there are 
more than 300 stations in over 200 
cities. Syndicated film programs are 
filling a large part of these new pro- 
gramming hoiirs Which cannot be 
filled by network originated shows. 

It is this demand which film pro- 
ducers and distributors— large and 
small alike— are now seeking to meet, 
and from which a pattern is beginning to develop. This 
emerging pattern of the industry has already made it ap- 
parent that enormous advantages accrue to the public, the 
television station, and the advertiser through the use of 
good syndicated film programs: The growing' television 
public is given an opportunity to see the fine first-run pro- 
grams. . ( like “Douglas Fairbanks Presents” and “Inner 
Sanctum’’), as well as repeats of success series like “Vic- 
tory at Sea” and “Badge 714” (formerly “Dragnet”) which 
ran originally on the TV networks. Syndicated film en- 
ables the TV station to fill its local program hours with 
entertainment and information of a kind not available 
through local origination. As a result; the whole quality 
level of TV programming throughout the nation is being 

Robt. Sarnoff 

Catering to Local Clients 

The local advertiser, with a limited budget, has now 
found a way to use the. TV medium, which he can no 
longer afford not to use. Syndicated film makes it possible 
for him to buy programming to fit his pocketbook and 
sales needs. A regional advertiser or multiple-market' 
sponsor, can through syndicated film, concentrate, his ad- 
vertising dollars in the areas where the largest proportion 
of his sales are made. A national advertiser can supple- 
ment his basic TV coverage by means of syndicated film 

It has also become evident that there is more to syndi- 
cating a film program than for a salesman to go but into 
the field with a can of film Under his arm, The true syndi- 
cator’s task and responsibility begins with the sale, and 
continues long after. It takes substantial financial and 
physical resources, as well as advertising know-how, to 
Convert a film series into an effective advertising and sell- 
. ing tool; The. costs of selling, printing, shipping, advertis- 
ing and merchandising a TV film series add Up to a consid- 
erable sum. 

Cornerstone for Stability 

Despite the laments of certain self-appointed critics, 
network programming has raised the quality of television 
as a national medium to a relatively high level— one which 
certainly compares favorably with magazines, newspapers, 
books, and other mass media. Syndicated films have the 
potential to raise the remaining available program time to 
an equally high level. 

With the need for quality film programming so appar- 
ent, it is obvious that one of the cornerstones for stability 
in the industry is the rerun, which makes possible the local 
showing — at a local cost— of programs of the highest qual- 
ity. Although film syndication is already a multimillion 
dollar business, much qf this investment remains to be 
recovered. Few film series made specifically for syndica- 
tion can recover all their costs on their initial run. It is 
impossible for a really fine scries — which may cost as 
much as $1,000,000 to do so. The rerun* therefore, be- 
comes ^conoihically important. 

The television audience, furthermore, is growing at the 
rate of 500,000 homes a month (or about 1,300,000 view- 
ers). Reruns are actually first runs to these viewers. Sta- 
tistics, show that there are literally millions who miss even 
«t.he highest rated episodes of the highest rated Series the 
first time around. Reruns are first runs to these view- 
ers, too> 

W’hen popular TV film shows are repeated, tl.iey almost 
Invariably reach a larger audience than they did on the 
o rs ^,.. 1 . un A six-city ARB survey shows, the “Victory at 
kea’ is currently reaching more than twice as many homes 
on its second run as it did on its first. 

From the advertiser’s point of view, a rerun is desir- 
because he gets a program that is a proved success, 
mid one whose sales-effectiveness is a matter of record. 

, d he. buys it at a price that makes it a particularly good 

advertising investment. 

' ybe validity of reruns does not mean, however, that 
e\ery film program' should necessarily continue to be 
shown just because it was produced. By exercising care- 
jut d 1S erimii ia tion^^ selecting only the best programs for 
indication, TV film distributors can perhaps do more than 
anyone else to enhance the quality of TV programming 
on a national scale. 

A further and extremely important factor for achieving 

stability in the syndication industry in pricing.; A few 
syndicators feel that the sale is the thing— at any price. 
Some film organizations, upon entering a market, quote 
varying prices to stations and . to agencies for the same 
program, often resulting in bargains and deals. Unless 
these tactics are eliminated, the public and the industry 
will suffer.. The greatest threat facing the syndication 
business today is price cutting by producers and distribu- 
tors in an effort, to salvage unsuccessful film properties 
or to raise needed cash. For this reason the NBC Film 
Division has dedicated itself to the maintenance of a 
stable price structure for all its properties and thereby 
provide sound business practices for the industry. 

It is no secret that quality and commercial success often 
go hand-in-hand. -Hollywood took a long step toward less- 
ening its recent travails by producing excellent movies 
which turned out to be boxoffice successes. The future of 
film syndication depends upon this same kind of winnow- 
ing process. The slipshod production, thrown together by 
a shortterm promoter w ho gets out with a few fast dollars^, 
will eventually gather dust in a film-storage vault. The 
future of the industry depends on those organizations 
which; can combine the best in showbusiness with an 
honest fulfillment of obligation to the advertiser and the 

programs will be remembered as the “Crystal . Set Era of 
TV”— it had its place, but aren’t the improvements spec- 

Edw. Madden. 


(V.P., General Manager, MPTV’s Film Syndication Div.) 

A year ago, at Variety’s Anniversary time, heated dis- 
cussions had been raging oetrveen vocal groups, as to 
whether ..the preponderance of future TV broadcasting 
would be on film or done “live” within the four walls of a 

studio or stage. The basic point both’ 
groups w ere missing was that the 
viewing public wasn't particularly in- 
terested. in the mechanical means used 
to bring their favorite shows to them 
on their home screens. Researchers 
found that the public had shown their 
preferences for such shows in the 10 
Top Television Programs of 1952 as 
“I Love Lucy,” and “You Bet Your 
Life,” two out of the top three shows 
haying a 50.5 rating or better, and 
both on film. The balance of that 
year's first 10 shows were “Talent 
Scouts,” “Godfrey and Friends,” “Mil- 
ton Berle Show,” “Your Show’ of Shows,” “Comedy Hour,” 
“Toast of the Town,” “What’s My Line?” and “TV. Play- 
house.” The tabulated. ARB score 12 months ago stood at 
8-to-2 in favor of “live” programs. 

Now, a year later, the ratio is 64o-4 in the Top 10 
roster, with the first three shows, topping the list, repre- 
senting the TV-film industry— “I Love Lucy,” “Dragnet” 
and “You Bet Y’our Life:” “Our Miss Brooks” garnered 
eighth position in the poll and every indication has it this 
show will continue to build in audience appeal and im- 
prove its rating as time goes by. Because televiewers 
.would not. know the difference most of the time, were it 
not for the usual film credits, the public's choice in. the 
.matter of film vs. “live” continues to prove the Show's the 

The output of all TV programming on film during 1953 
was, of course, substantially larger than in the previous 
12-month period. During 1954. about 45°c of all TV 
programming will be made on film. Filmmakers will be 
turning out 120 hours per month .of completed TV films. 
The crying need for good stories will continue and some of 
the public's favorite TV talent will constantly be on the 
lookout for new material for films to be made in the imme- 
diate future. But the advertiser and his agency are by now 
fully aware that they can get greater flexibility, more 
selective market coverage, lower advertising cost, and in 
many cases higher rating through film syndication than 
through network placement. 

$50,000,000 Program 

This puts the problem squarely up to the film syndica- 
tion business to bring network calibre shows to the film 
syndication field. We at MPTV are doing this through a 
three-vear $30,000,000 production program. For example, 
this winter, one of radio's perennial favorites, Ed Gard- 
ner. is bringing "Duffy's Tavern” to TV via films. “Flash 
Gordon.” the 20-year-old King Features Syndicate charac- 
ter, makes his debut ion TV, fi.lnied expressly for video 
audiences. Ella Raines, starring as “Janet Dean, Reg- 
istered Nurse,” offers a dramatic series on film, and Drew 
Pearsons “Washington Merry-Go-Round” brings the world 
famous Washington reporter to TV in weekly. 15-minute 
telefilms. . “Paris Precinct,” costarring Louis Jourdan 
and Claude Dauphin, based on true stories of the French 
police, wiil be filmed on actual locations throughout 

Advertisers who'- spend tremendous amounts of money to 
bring news, information, education and entertainment to 
the consumer public, are conscious of the latter’s prefer- 
ences for filmed programs. . They, are realizing more and 
more, day by day, that by filming a. program, giving the 
producers a less limited area in which to . film their shows, 
as against the confinement of four walls of a studio or 
theatre, they can attain higher ratings at 'a- lower cost in 
the long run. Research has proven this just as surely as 
it has classified the selections of favorite shows ii> the 
more than 25,000,000 out of 47,000,000 homes that have 

A year from now, at Variety’s 49th Anniversary time, 
the old, film vs. “live” argument may give every indication 
of becoming a thing, of the past. The ratio of the Top 10 
Shows of 1954 may well stand at 8-to-2 in favor of film— 
stranger: things hare happened! For its 50th, or Golden 
Anniversary, Variety's TV-Film muggs can look to a 
clean sweep in the video field— it 11 be 10-to-0 and * live * 

Geo. Shupert 


(V.P. In Charge of ABC Film Syndication) / 

Film Syndication is today a multi-million dollar busi- 
ness. It is the means whereby the local sponsor can buy a 
television program of a quality equal to that of the top 
spending national advertiser at a price he can afford. In 

my opinion, film syndication has only 
begun to show its ultimate potential, 
but before it does many of today’s 
syndicators must either change their 
methods-Hpr fail. ! ' • 

Our setup, at ABC is a simple one. 
The Flm Syndication Division is. treat- 
ed seriously and given equal status 
with the other four major divisions 
of the network. We have been grant* 
ed our independence from the other 
network divisions in Order that we 
will not end up as a dumping 
grounds for. unsuccessful network 
film programs. Nor must we favor 
either our five owned television stations or our affiliates— - 
we pursue a strictly first come, first serve policy. This is 
very important if we are to successfully compete with 
other syndicators. 

We are fully cognizant of the fact that television has up . 
to now* known nothing but a sellers market, and that this 
is going to change one of these days— -perhaps soon. We 
believe that in the ensuing battle for the advertiser’s . 
dollar we will need quality , product, fairly priced, offered 
to stations and .advertisersi'bXia.. quality sales force w hich 
is both' able and w illing to render intelligent service to 
the. film buyer. ' •• 

Our two initial offerings— “Racket Squad” and “The 
Playhouse ’— are each tops in their class. They have al- 
ready proved their worth on a network basis and can be 
performed several more, times on a local basis before they 
will have played to their ultimate audience. Vie will have 
other top quality, film shows available— some o t them first 
runs and others Which have been top rated network pro- 

To offer these on a local and regional basis, we have 
already built the nucleus of a top .quality sales organiza- 
tion These, men have been chosen because they, know both 
the local advertiser's problems and the local station's prob- 
lems. They are not order takers nor are they ordinary film 
salesmen. Each man is expected to know, all there is to 
know about his product. In addition he must possess ex- 
pert know ledge of the television film basin e-S -its new 
developments and its various problems. Thus he can offer 
his clients much more than quality product alone. He. can ' 
render a much needed counseling service. 

We feel that our price structure must be realistic both 
to the buyer and the seller. The buyer must get m Ore than 
his money’s worth. The seller must get enough to allow 
for a fair profit and a continuance of his operation on a 
quality level. Certainly no useful purpose will be^served 
by the film syndicator cutting prices so low as to operate 
at a loss. We do not subscribe to the policy of selling at a,, 
loss now in the hopes that some day we may be able to get 
what our product is worth. We think we are entitled to a 
profit, now. We also, know that no business will last long 
with shoddy product and we want, none of it. 

We are extremely bullish in the future of films for tele- 
vision. We feel that one day the profit from film syndi- 
cation .operation will represent a pretty health}, slice of 
ABC's overall profit. 



It is a truism, but it is good to restate it once more: 
There is no difference between the horde of cavemen 
listening to a gossip-carrier with news of the neighboring 
tribe, or the masses in the streets of Athens entranced by 
the stage plays or their Greek masters of the drama, or 
ladies sitting on the balconies of royal courts enchanted 
by the talcs of wandering minnesingers, or our theatre- 
goipg audiences, or our radio listeners or our television 
viewers, when it comes to a story. They hare listened and 
they will listen, as long as it is a good story. 

From Euripides to Fred Coe, from Mozart to Felix 
Jackson and from Shakespeare to Robert. Montgomery, one 
eternal truth prevails: t ho story is the: thing! 

What makes a good story? 

The answer is difficult.; 

Every hum ah being lias the irresistible desire to belong. 
He is gregarious and interested in his neighbors because, 
deep in iris heart, lie feels insecure. Since lie does not 
know from where he comes and where Iris destiny will 
force him to go. he is insecure as a matter of course. With 
insatiable cpriosity, he w ill listen to the tales about people 
and their experiences, always hoping that maybe, one day, 
they will give him a hint about the true purpose and the 
impenetrable mystery of his life. If lie hears that tragedy 
befell a neighbor, lie crosses himself, grateful that. he was 
spared this time; if he learns about the jackpot luck of 
the man next door, his desire is aroused to equal the 
other's success. It gives him courage to go on. The ex- 
periences others make and talk about 'by wav of stories) 
influence his outlook on life, and, influence Iris decisions. 

Therefore: A good story is one which gives the largest 
mass of people the .strongest feeling of security within the 
sector of their owm existence, within the orbit of their 

(Continued on page 104) 


Forty-eighth Annivertary 

Wednesday, January 6, I954 

How To Make Wince-Meat 
Out of a TV News Show 


When Variety asked me to write a piece for its 48th 
anniversary issue on how to put on a good TV news show 
I heartily agreed, as I have some rather definite ideas on 
the subject; But when the suggested length for the article 

was mentioned I quickly cast about 
for a new subject, one that could be 
treated adequately within the space 

Hence the above title. For when 
a television newsman is pleased with a 
show he has just done— or seen* he 
would have to go .to great length and 
detail to explain exactly why it was 
a good show, since so many factors 
enter into achieving a happy blend 
of the right words and the right pic: 
tures. But when a news program— 
his own or somebody else’s— makes 
John Daly him wince, it is easy to tell whyS Here 

are a few; examples. 

One of the gentlemen who can make wince-meat out 
of a TV news show is the gimmick-crazy editor or TV 
expert. He sits in his office with his shoulders hunched 
watching the show and hasn’t got any movement; 
“VVe have to put movement into it. Why don’t we have 
our boy sit on the corner of the desk? Then he can say, 
'Good evening. How are you? ’ and-he can walk around 
the desk, sit down, and he can do the news. It gives it. 
pace; it gives, it movement,” The fact that the move- 
ment is meaningless doesn’t bother him at all. This addic- 
tion to movement for movement’s sake alone is some- 
thing that those of us who appear before the cameras 
and who have editorial supervision in some degree over 
leievision news programs have to fight. 

There is. another device the gimmick-lovers like even 
better. The TV reporter is sitting down at. a desk and 
working very hard; trying to make sense out of a compli- 
cated story. Now he must get up and walk across what 
seems like several hundred yards of studio to some carts 
or maps, talking as he walks. He hasn't been making 
things very clear anyway, but with the chart— rand the: 
hike— he can confuse the audience so completely it won t 
know What,. he is talking about. 

leagues and t owe a large vote of thanks to these intrepid 
and quick-witted lensmen, 

In the infant days of TV news reporting, the camera- 
man was often an old newsreel man whose only concern 
was the picture. Sound to him was an abhorrent thing 
which, with its ugly microphones and wires, only made it 
harder to get the pretty picture he wanted to take. He 
always looked for action, whether or not it was news- 
worthy or even made sense. The water skier was to him 
the superb story, because it was the superb picture. The 
fact that he had shot it every March 12 since he was old 
enough to hold a camera did not detract in any way from 
its excellence in his mind. 

On the other hand, a Congressman announcing a resolu- 
tion to impeach the President was, in the mind °f the 
■transplanted newsreel m^n, a big bore, because it Was a 
bad picture. And in the early days, before cameramen 
learned the requirements of the new medium, there wel ( e 
several incidents comparable to the classic" tale of the cub 
reporter sent to cover a ball game who returned with no 
story. His explanation was tliaf the stands had collapsed; 
killing several hundred people, and the game had been 
called off— therefore lie had no story. Today, fortu- 
nately, with cameramen trained to recognize what is news 
and What is not, and with cameramen and reporters work- 
ing together as teams, there i$ Little danger of Their return- 
ing from an assignment with their film unexposed because 
the event they were sent to cover was cancelled by a 

Yes, there have been, and still are, a lot of problems, 
and a lot of egregious errors have been committed. But 
TV news is hardly out of the crawling stage as yet, We 
who are in it are growing up with it and learning our 
lessons the hard way, because there is no school to go to. 
The reason it has matured as. fast as it has, and is getting 
better all . the time, is that it is highly competitive. Each 
network strives to get the news on. first, and always to show 
a picture. This sometimes leads to half-baked coverage, 
but as technical problems are overcome one by one, as the. 
period between the time something happens and the time 
it can be put On the air grows continually shorter, and as 
the people engaged in TV news reporting, spurred by the 
healthy competitive urge to “get there fastest with the 
bestest.” constantly find new and better ways of dping 
their, jobs, television comes closer and closer to realizing 
its full potential as a news medium. 


Still— — Very Still 

One’ of the initial' mistakes ma^e^ in' television news was 
the still. When you were given a TV news program to do, 
you looked at the film material that was available, and 
then before you reached for a gun, you remembered there 
were still pictures. So you reached for them instead. 
After you had used them, you sometimes wished you had 
reached for the gun. As a rule of thumb, there is such 
static quality to a still picture on television that you do 
harm by its use, unless it is of transcendental importance. 
If it is the only available depiction of a great disaster, 
and you use it with a frank admission that it is there 
because you have not yet got the film which you hope to 
have in a few hours, and “this story is so big that we 
thought you would like to see in this still picture what 
the scene looks like,” then you have a valid reason for 
using it. But just to put a still picture on; especially if it 
is the face of one of our national leaders with his mouth 
open arid one eye half shut, does, neither your show nor 
his career any good. 

There is another obsession which is sometimes found 
among producers and managers — mostly among those 
whose mothers went to see ‘ The Front Page.’- They will 
move onto a television hews set and say, “The trouble 
with this is it doesn’t look like a city room. Take off your 
coats, roll up your sleeves, open, your neckties, Then, it 
Will look like a newsroom.” Unhappily, the victims who 
have been so instructed, particularly if they -happen to be 
conservative and neat in their dress, will feel silly and 
act that way when they get on the television screen. 

. There is another aspect of gimmickry that really is not 
a gimmick, but it is something that can cause trouble. 
That is the interview. If you are searching, as you often 
have to do, rather frantically for material to cover the 
period of a TV news program, you will turn to the inter- 
view. Now. the interview requires the most rigid self- 
discipline. An interview properly used. and given a proper 
amount of time can become a very useful ingredient in 
television news coverage, But an interview used to no. 
other purpose than to fill three minutes, or to no other 
purpose than to put on the screen the physical person of 
somebody whose name happens to be in the news, does 
no good to the program or to the person who is put on. It 
is a reasonably good concept, I think, that interviews in 
television news presentation very properly belong on the 
half hour or hour weekly review. There an interviewee 
can be used to support the basic ingredients of a story 
which have been previously drawn together and developed. 

That Change of Pace 

One method that is used rather widely is the presenta- 
tion of a story with a brief exchange between an inter- 
viewer and interviewee as the first step- Then film which 
affects. or depicts the story matter in which the interviewee 
is the expert is shown.- There is, thus, an opportunity to 
discuss the film with the /interviewee, as it is shown, taking 
it in at a proper point, going back to the visual depiction 
of interviewer and interviewee, and then back to film, 
intercutting. It gives a change of pace, gives renewed 
interest, and brings an expertize to the explanation of the 
film which otherwise would be lacking. Then, again, there 
are those who put personalities on a television news pro- 
gram for a minute and a half. The guest comes in, and the. 
commentator says, “This is Mr. John Doe who yesterday 
afternoon climbed the side of a building to save a little 
girl when the building was on fire. Mr. Doe, it has been 
very nice to have you with us.’’ A minute and a half is 
up. “Goodbye. Glad you were here.” That kind of inter- 
view does not improve any program and I don’t think it 
should be used. 

. Cameramen— or cameraman-reporter teams— are one of 
the most Important factor's in TV news reporting. It is 
they who are oti the shot where the news is happening, 
and actually, by deciding instantaneously what to shoot 
and. what not to shoot, they perform a very real editorial 
function. Their news sense and judgment, which must be 
applied in seconds without the benefit of reflection or 
hindsight, strongly affect program quality, and my coi- 

■■ 1 


Maggl McXellis 

“Getting to know you, getting to know all about you . . . 
getting to like you” . . . these words by Rodgers &.Ham-. 
merstein accurately describe the feeling of the TV viewer 
regarding the most fascinating personalities of the day. 

Years ago, film press agents desper- 
ately tried to keep a star’s happy 
marriage a secret from the public. 
A wedding ring, it was believed, de? 
tracted from the glamour of the idol 
of the people. It was standard pro- 
cedure for a star to be mysterious, 
wear dark glasses and issue state- 
ments through the publicity depart- 
ments of the studios ... carefully 
worded statements that had, the ap- 
proval of the big boss. 

Television has changed air that. 
Each time a viewer switches on his 
TV set; a personal invitation is ex- 
tended to him to get to know his favorite film star, 
baseball player or symphony conductor. On any number 
of programs he can see and hear these people. sitting 
around, answering . questions . and giving their personal 
opinions on a variety of subjects. 

I was amazed to discover that several hundred traffic 
policemen were delighted when it was brought out on 
“Leave It to the Girls” that Aldo Ray is a former cop. 
The Aldo Ray of the film, “Miss Sadie Thompson.” is quite 
different from Aldo Ray, the traffic cop. Here was a 
regular guy with whom these boys in blue could identify 
themselves and they liked it! 

When Robert Wagner revealed on my WABC-TV show 
that for the picture “Beneath The 12 Mile Reef” he had 
to dye his hair and get a permanent, a score of male 
viewers wrote, “I guess I shouldn’t complain just because 
my wife wants me to get a haircut every week. Look 
at that poor Wagner guy ... a permanent!” Bob had 
established a rapport with these fellows. From now on, 
they will be sympathetic towards him instead of resenting 
his good looks. Interview programs tend to humanize stars 
and that seems to be the order of the day. 

Radio also plays a great role along these lines. I inter- 
viewed Deborah Kerr on radio and she spoke charmingly 
of her 20-month-old daughter who is the same age as my 
Meg. Listening to her you realized that she is truly a 
devoted mother. And what an effect this had. on other 
mothers who sometimes take a dim view of “actresses.” 
They wrote, “I saw Deborah Kerr as that unfaithful wife 
in ‘From Here to Eternity’ and I sure was surprised to 
hear her talk about her own little girl, i got quite a dif- 
ferent idea of her.” Another letter contained about the 
same words but this mother mentioned “Tea and Sym- 
pathy,” the Broadway, play in which Deborah is appear-, 
ing; Because of her frank answers to questions every lis- 
tener would like to ask, these, women were getting to know 
Miss Kerr as a friend. 

Most men know what Roy Campanella can do when lie is 
catching for the Brooklyn Dodgers. But it probably wasn’t 
until Ed Marrow took a camera into the Campanella home 
that they knew that the first mitt Roy ever used is promi- 
nently displayed in his basement rumpus room, And, al- 
though most people would imagine that Leopold Stokow- 
ski has a magnificent grand piano in his penthouse, few: of 
them knew that he cherished a large and not very musical 
Chinese gong until Mr. Murrow gave them an intimate 
glimpse of the. Stokowski apartment. 

TV shows these fabulous personalities as they arerWhat 
they say is what they think . .. . not what someone else 
w rote for them. What they wear is their personal choice 
... not what was designed for a fictitious screen character. 
And, as we are. all loyal to what is familiar to us, so does 
the viewer become more loyal the better he gets to know a 
star. Television is the greatest Friendship Club ever 

J. C. Swayze 

If You Ain’t Got Jitters 

’t a 


I have, I suppose, a zany twist to my mind that sparks 
an interest in the darndest things, among them that nionu 
mental bogey of show business, stage fright* I am some- 
thing of a student of this particular form of jitters. Arid 

since the old saw; “misery loves com- 
pany, 0 has the ring of sterling, I have 
found one ' Comforting facet to the 
malady. Even those you don’t sus- 
pect suffer from it. The only excep- 
tions I ever heard of are Ethel Mer- 
man and Lilli Palmer. Miss Mer- 
man's, “Why should I be scared 1 
know’ my lines; don’t I?” is an all-time 

: One evening during the period I 
was on the Sunday Goodyear Play, 
house a member of the stage crew 
summed up with accuracy during re- 

“Before I was in this business I used to wonder how 
all those people on my TV screen could be so calm. [ 
don’t wonder anymore, I know'. They’re all just scared 
to death.” 

There is one comforting school of thought made up of 
those who say the only time you need to worry is when you 
don’t have stage fright. It was Jimmy Durante Mho said; 
“When you get that nervous feeling, then you kno\v you're 
going to be good.” . 

I didn’t know Al Jolson but I remember O, O. McIn- 
tyre’s line that lie suffered the backstage jitters like every- 
one else but, when finally onstage, he clicked with ma- 
chine gun-like rapidity. I can. testify to that because I saw 
him from out front; 

I remember when Max Liebman, rehearsing his cast 
and giving instructions, wound up: “So you have to. re- 
member all these things— and take care of the butterflies 
as well.” 

Ethel. Barrymore once said she had suffered exquisite 
torture all her career from this mysterious ailment, which 
can,, on occasion, make the victim feel too weak to -utter a 
line. Her debut as a teen-age youngster, so goes the 
legend, found hier in that fix, literally. The spell that 
had struck her speechless was. abruptly broken by a hearty 
voice from the balcony. “Come on, Ethel, we’re all for 
you.” She may have suffered stage fright endlessly but 
she’s never been speechless since, thank goodness. 

A lot of you riiay-remember that great speakeiy.Al Smith, 
and you may also recall that he was struck dumb the first 
time, he -upped to a microphone. Of course, he later had 
a word for the darned thing— “raddio” — and the country 
loved the coinage. It became as widely circulated as the 
famed blooper of Graham McNamee’s “Gasoloon,” which 
Ed Wynn promptly picked up and kidded him about for 
.weeks in the days of the “Fire Chief” programs. And, 
by the way, what do you suppose caused Graham to sav 
“gasoloon” when he’d intended it to be “gasoline?” The 
same Old thing, a form of stage fright. One afternoon, 
making a recording, the veteran McNamee. had to repeat 
a simple announcement 21 times before he managed to 
get it out as it should be. And this, mind you, was onfe 
of the glibbest veterans the airlanes ever owned; 

More Bloopers 

Another case was Harry Von Zell’s “Hoobert Heevdr, ’’ as 
odd a label as has ever been tacked on that distinguished 
former chief executive. It’s the jitters that lay behind 
most of these fantastic mixups. Another incident was that 
of the . actor who intended to say he was going “to give 
the bell, a pull,” and wound up saying he was .-going “to 
give' the bull a pill.” And, of course, there" is the -chap 
‘ who was introducing the premiere of a new show spon- 
sored by £he Perfect Circle Piston Ring Company. He told 
a waiting nation the elaborate program was being brought 
them by the “Cer-fect Perklc. Riston Ping Company.” 

Back in the years I served as a Kansas City newsboy I 
used to watch the acts from the wings in the city’s play- 
houses. I’d also watch them beforehand and I have a vivid 
recollection of Jack Haley, that Broadway and Hollywood 
veteran, in makeup and stage clothes, walking in a circle 
as„he rehearsed to himself in a chant the lines of a new 
act. He saw or heard nothing, moving as if in a nervous 
trance. And here was one of the hep guys of show busi- 
ness, fully capable of getting out of any jam he was apt to 
encounter onstage. 

Who’s Skeered? 

I remember one evening when I was starting a new 
show. “Are you scared?” asked Tuffie, my wife. “Hardly;” 
spoke up a friend standing by, “Do you ever get scared 
anymore, John?” I -could manage only a sickly grin, and 
hope he didn't know my legs had turned to rubber. I was 
on the Opening of this season’s “Show /of Shows,” and 
shortly before we took the air was talking to Bob Burton, 
Imogene Coca’s husband. “Well,” he said, suddenly. “I 
shouldn’t be taking up your time now when you’re worry- 
ing about remembering your lines and all that.” Up spoke 
Len Cantor, who was serving as my “Man Friday” to see I 
didn’t get lost in the unfamiliar shuffle. “Don’t you be- 
lieve it,” he said, with conviction, “Mr. Swayze is one 
of the few here this evening who isn’t worrying about lines 
or anything else!” 

I almost fell off the stage apron. I wasn’t worrying? U 
was paralyzed! Yet others: have said the same thing,, ask- 
ing hovv I keep cOol when something goes wrong on the 
“Camel News Caravan.” “Don’t you ever have stage, 
fright?” they ask. Boy, oh boy! .1 not only get it oh opi'n- 
ihg nights, L occasionally have recurring spells on a show 

I’ve been on for years. They zoom out Of nowhere, these 

spells, arid attack with their insidious legions. 

In tprn, I'd always envied my good friend, Ben Grauer, 
as cool appearing a potato as I ever saw face a micro- 
phone or camera. “That jasper,” I said to myself, “just 
hasn’t any nerves.” 

By chance one afternoon Ben plopped down besi.clrf 
me at a lunch counter, where I, was having a sandwich. 
He reached in his pocket and pulled out a small silver pill* 
box, precisely the same kind I carry and from precisely 
the same place, Mexico City. He opened it, this unflustered 
cool cucumber, and what did I see inside? Precisely the 
same kind of nerve sedative tablets I. use myself when 
the going gets too rough! 

Yet, you know, somehow I fancy we’d miss ’em if we 
didn’t have ’em, at that. 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth J^ARIE'TY Anniversary 






Thp TV Producer shuffled along the park; road leading 
to the zoo, deep in thought, his brow wrinkled in seven 

The Sponsor's 

clearly defined channels 

threat, reverberated in his brain: “Get 
more laughs, Kahn, or I drop ‘Life 
With Moe’ and pick up ‘Life With 
Joe’,’’ v 

More laughs, more laughs — . 

“Life With Moe’’ averaged, a laugh 
every four seconds, but that wasn’t 
good enough. Their opposition, Beat 
the. Experts, got screams every three 
seconds by beating experts with rub- 

The Public is a masochist, Kahn 
thought bitterly. 

More, laughs. Where to get more 

Lou penman Fire the writers? Na. 

lie had hired and fired every Writer in town at least 
three -times. Apparently the writers had a strong union 
and they never submitted a new joke without first getting 
approval from the Guild office. 

Kahn’s job was at Stake and he knew. it. He had to coax 
louder and funnier laughs from his studio audiences, but 
row 9 Once he had received a wonderful telegram from 
The Sponsor about their last show. “Great. Terrific, 
Never heard such screams. They laughed like lunatids.” 
Luckily The Sponsor had never discovered the truth. 
They really had been lunatics. 

Forty schizophrenics smuggled out of a nearby institu- 
tion and planted strategically among the studio audience. . 
For 30 consecutive minutes they had chuckled, giggled, 
snickered, tittered, guffawed, screamed, howled and gone 
crazy. Correction— they had already went crazy. 

They had even found the soap commercial deliriously 
funny, and the TV viewing audience had thought it a won- 
derful gimmick: foaming soapsuds onstage and a frothing 
audience offstage. 

Oh. yes. There had been one other stroke of genius. 
Kahn had gotten the idea one day while strolling, about 
the zoo, just as he. was doing now. The Sponsor had then, 

. just as now, threatened to cancel “Life With Moe,” and 
Kahn in desperation had cOme up with a lifesaver. . 

•' He had distributed a pack of honest-lo-goodness laugh- 
ing hyenas among the. studio audience, all dressed up as ; 
out-of-towners. They had clocked a laugh-a-secondr— a rec- 
ord for Studio B— and one hyena, the hammy one in the 
pack, had leaped up on the stage and begun mugging before . 
the TV cameras. By the time they could reach him he had 
blurted out the Name of The Song and won himself $5,000 
and two weeks in Europe with Cy Howard. 

Yes. they had clocked a laugh-a-second that night. 

" The producer sighed. 

You couldn’t rent . a pack of hyenas every week — it ran 
into too much money— and besides, hyenas were too tricky 
to handle. That hammy one had almost queered the act. 
He stopped before the hyena cage and stared wistfully 
. at one hysterical animal. 

“Hya, Mr. Kahn, Manna hire Felix tonight?” 

It Mas Joe, the amiable, bribe-able zookeeper. 

“No, Joe,” Kahn said sadly, “I used up the budget money 
last week On itching powder.” 

"Itching poM'der?” 

?‘‘We sprinkled it on the audience scats.” 

“Oh yeh. Good idea. Get a lotta laughs?” 

“Only one every four seconds. That stuff w orks slow.” 
“That’s too bad, Mi\ Kahn,” 

“Yeh.” . . 

Kalin listened' to the manical screech of the hyenas and 
a frustrated look crept into his honest blue eyes. 

“If only 1 could get people to laugh like that,” lie said 

"Uh, Mr. Kahn ” 


“I gotta confession.” 

“What, Joe?” 

“That hyena, it ain’t really* laughing.” 

‘‘What do you mean?” 

“It’s got laryngitis. It can’t laugh.” 

“Stop kidding, Joe,” Kalin said irritably, “I hear it laugh. 
How can you. tell me Felix has laryngitis?” 

“Inside Felix, Mr. Kahn . . . a soundtrack:” 

An incredulous look spread over The Producer’s harried 
features, lie could hardly hear his own voice as he 

“Laughs . . . on a soundtrack, huh?” 

Sure. What the heck, Mr. Kahn. People come to the 
zoo to hear our hyenas laugh and vve can’t afford to gam- 
ble.- So, starling last week all our. hyenas switched to 

£ a,in ’s ejcs al Piost popped out of his head. 

Genius! Sheer genius!” he shouted. “You take out 
^hyena’s voice-box and insert a laugh-tape. . . 

Uh, Mr, Kahn, begging your pardon,” the zookeeper 
saia respectfully, “the phrase . is ‘dub in.’ It’s a term 
C01 *? e d by us zookeepers.” ; 

l.hi’cw an affectionate arm around Joe. 

” » V-’hJ-nd.^yqu. don’t know what you’ve just done for 
j ■ ’ .- e sa hl in ' tense, quivering tones. "'Your gimmick 
iii g °* ng *° revolutionize- the entire industry. And when 
•f. "^oi’y ®f Television .is written* my name will rank 
h Baird, Zworykin. and Madman, Muntz.” 

# # . *• 

, ihe week “Life With Moe” had been filmed, and 

pnr. ' la hgher dubbed in every two seconds. The audi- 
ce, poor trusting souls, couldn’t tell a straight line from 
pi i a e" c .“ ll n e — bu t didn’t seem to care, They never had to 
Jaimi S i ? j° ke "'ere, funny. Every time the “audience” 
^ey laughed— and “Life With Moe” continued to 
gain more and more listeners. 



oieboard in Variety read: 

Life With Moe ... 169 

Life With Joe 7 

Life With Pat ................... 5 

Life With Nat . . 3 

*> . e Wtih Freiberg . . . . 3 2 

a-S'i* i-, the end of the Tear. “Life With Aloe” was 
...Raided ,th.e Nobel Peace Prize : as: 

“The Entertainment Vehicle most responsible for spread- 
ing chaos and confusion, among Soviet spy agents.” 

Moreover, "Life With Moe” became such a TV must 
that they figured out a M ay to beam it to people who had 
only radio sets. 

With such phenomenal success, Kahn’s services became 
sought after by every TV network in the country. He 
reached the pinnacle of his career, however, when he man- 
aged to combine several oiling comedy shows into, one 

fabulous riotous package entitled: 

“Life With Moe, Joe v Pat, Nat and Freiberg.” 

And Kahn .took no chances. He dubbed in enough laughs 
to sink a Don Wilson. . 

' . Kahn's Magnificent Hoax must have remained undc- : 
tected forever, if he hadn’t let success turn his head. Burst- 
ing with his great . secret, Kahn told a fcllow>producer 
about his Perfect Grime. One drink led to another and 
Kahn decided to prove to his skeptical; friend what a 
genius could do when the mOOd seized him, 

That fateful Sunday 8 p m., Kahn’s “Life With Moe, Joe, 
Pat, Nat and Freiberg” was rolling along smoothly, pick- 
ing Up the usual 14 laughs per second. Suddenly 

Kahn stopped his cameras and gave orders for the 
laugh-tape to keep playing under the blacked-out screens. 

Shortly thereafter, 40,000,000 Americans did a concerted 
double-take when they realized they had been laughing 
at absolutely nothing for three solid, minutes! 

Infuriated at having been thus duped, The People began 
to vent their fury at the new medium which had outraged 
their intelligence. Newspapers carried banner Headlines 
every night, and the. dispatches all told the same grim 
story:' ; ' v 

Salem, Mass . — A witch-hunting mob burned a 19-inch 
TV set at the stake. 

Dalhart, Tex . — A hanging party stormed a private home 
and strung Up a quivering TV aerial. 

Kansas City . — An unruly crowd raided a saloon and rode 
its TV set out of town on a bar rail. 

Kahn? To save 1 him from. mob violence, the Government 
had to. step ip, 

They sent him up for life on an income tax charge— 
or as Variety put it: 



By SOL SAKS : “ ' 

(Writer, -My Favorite Husband’ CBS -TV ) 


The one important lesson we in television can learn 
from the motion picture industry is that underestimating 
the customer can be a fatal mistake. 

From the time they were able to offer — at the cost of 
a few pennies — the entrancing sight of. figures that moved 
to people who had rarely if ever been inside a theatre, 
the motion picture industry grew with leaps and bounds. 
Grew, both culturally and economically to be a colossus; 
rich, powerful, influential . . , and afraid of its own 
flickering shadow. This colossus of the entertainment 
world was guided not by directors, writers, actors or 

even producers: but by men . in walnut-panelled offices 
who had their fingers on the pulse of the boxoffice and 
claimed to know just what the average person — symbol- 
ized by a little old lady who lived in Keokuk — wanted 
to see. 

But the man in the walnut-panelled office claimed to 
know only what the. little : old lady in Keokuk w anted to 
see; the standard of what she should see lie left to any 
self-appointed guide vociferous enough to threaten effects 
at the b oy Xnd, every time one of these Lilliputian guides 
raised his voice 111 remonstralion, the colossus .would 
quiver in fright, apologize, and promise never to disobey 

The net result was usually a non-controversial. non- 
moral. lion-intelligent picture featuring Betty Grable’s 
legs, made at a cost that could build a college and 
bringing back enough profit to build a small city. 

— -Ami Then the TV Dawn 

Then along came television. 

At first the motion picture industry decided to just 
ignore it and maybe it would go away. But when they 
fotind they would have to give battle, they fought the only 
way they knew how. They got more expensive publicity 
agents to get bigger pictures in more newspapers of 
prettier girls in scantier costumes standing next to a can 
of axle-grease in commemoration of Lubrication Week; 
they sent movie idols out to hold revival meetings all 
over the country, exhorting the faithful that movies were 
still the best entertainment; until, panicky, they reached 
the reductio ad absurdum of trying to defeat television 
by pulling cardboard framed glasses on people so that 
they could see roller coasters coming out of the screen. 

Then finally, when all else had failed, a few of the 
more forward thinking men in the industry presented 
one last hope; a -revolutionary method of attack, a brand 
new thought— the best Way to get people to go to the 
moyies was to make good movies. 

In a few short years, despite the inevitable, niistakos, 
the television industry has already made some achieve- 
ments of which w;e can. all be. proud; shows like “Mr. 
Peepers” and Philco Playhouse, writers like Paddy. 
Chayefskv, records of the American scene like “See It 
Now.” - 

But already wc begin to see ominous signs.. Already 
the men in live walnut-panelled rooms are figuring- out 
the surefire formulas; the .-Writers, directors and actors 
are alreadv taking their places along the assembly line 
bells which will carry their efforts through the fusing 
machine and into the puitch-press with four adjustments; 
A imitations of "I Love .Lucy”; B,. imitations of "What’s 
My Line?”; C, imitations of "Dragnet”; and X, an adapt- 
able adjustment for airy future successful formula some, 
daring pioneer might discover* 

Soon , the self-appointed inspectors will take their 
place in the shipping room; the bluenose reformer to 
pass on the product, morally; and the grocer from New 
York State to pass on It politically, 

' Let's be brave. Let's,- within the bounds of good taste 

Bob Consldine 

Stars Of ‘Electric Pictures’ 
Worth All They Earn 


They re not a bad lot, these stars of TV, or “electric 
pictures” a$ the medium is called by NBC’s Ann Gillis, 
They more than earn Whatever they make. Someone 
recently wrote t hat L iberaee makes $40,000 a w eek 1 or woe 

it a minute? ) . for doing what appar- 
ently comes naturally; More power 
to him. I’m sure he’s underpaid. For 
TV people work or worry 24 hours a 
day, as well as in .13-week periods. 
Berle, Allen, Groueho, Lucy and the 
Bishop work for coolie wages. 

They are never “off.” Goggle-eyed 
fans may see . them (with the excep- 
tion of the Bisli) relaxing at. Toots 
Shoe’s or Lindy’s, the Pump Room 
or the Brou n Derby, in the wee sma’ 
hours. But they are working. They 
are talking shop. That’s work. TV 
people talk only shop. Radio people 
have been known to mention other topics. H. V. Kallen* 
born, Lowell Thomas and. others have been know n to go 
for a full evening without some discussion of their light- 
ing, writers, channel number, rating, etc. 

Not TV people. For them there is no variety, except 
with a capital V, and thus no rest. The top ones are con- 
stantly in rehearsal or going through the usually well-con- 
cealed agony of “the show,” or unwinding after a. ; tavern 
or clarinet cave, pi* taking part in a benefit— often spu- 
rious. Sleep brings little surcease, for then they enter into 
a common nigHirnWe: . 

They show up late for “the show ” because of an accident 
or a defective watch. Then they lose their script, or the 
Teleprompter develops, crankcase trouble and sticks bn a 
line which ends with “suddenly. . . In this macabre 
dreami the audience consists, entirely of that member of 
the sponsors advisory board ..-who hates the star's guts like 
crazy and is determined to replace him by Tony Wpns. 

Television stars, nine times out of ten. are convinced 
that most makeup, dabbers are out to run them off the air.. 
The makeup people seem to them to be in cahoots w ith the 
lighting directors, w ho set their scalding; beams in such 
a way as to bring out the nibst wrinkles per square inch. 

If the TV-^tar T .ic_a_c.Qmeiiian he she is bound to th ink 
that his her writers have entered into a secret conspiracy 
with a rival comedian to make him her— the ifirq come- 
dian-sound duller than Joe Josephine Miller. And as a 
constant viewer of comedy programs I'm inclined to be- 
lieve the .fears are often wellgrounded. 

If. the TV star runs a panel-- of -political -discussion he 
finds his soul gnawed, by the basic ingratitude of politics, 
who serve him for free. Homer Q. QuackenlrJier. the 
candidate, willingly stood on his head pn “the show" just 
before election. But now that he's safely ensconced in a 
fat cat job in Washington, the bum wouldn't thin',; of 'filling- 
in for a scheduled principal who broke her leg on the way. 
to the studio. 

There is a poignant lack of security around c%en the 
most famous TV stars. II they can be said to be happy 
from time to time, those times must be immediate];; after 
a pew 13-week option has been picked up. The times are 
not lengthy. There is always a. new Mbrry, What's the 
opposition doing? What about that new show on that big 
.independent, where they’re throwing red cherry pies in- 
stead of plain old black and whites? What's the fellow 
with that rating outfit got against you? 

‘Tjie Shon’ 

That lack of security comes out in all discussions about 
“the show.” There is no other show; in a parallel field 
except “the show." Discussion of anybody else’s TV effort 
embarrasses the principal of “the show.” He she is quick 
to read into the friendliest friend's simplest remark about 
somebody's else's show a reflection on “the show.” All 
but an excoriating discussion of a semi-rival's show is mis- 
taken by the principal as a blast at “the show.” He M.Ve 
casts about wondering if the speaker really is a true 
friend, or whether the sponsor will spend enough extra 
money to make “the show " so big it cm be received only 
on 27-inch screens. 

It’s a wonder these people are as nice folks as tho\ are, 
when you consider all the pressures, all. the uncertainties, 
all the insecurity, all the dependence on the whims of 
patron and public. 

I know only two that TV completely soured, as com- 
pared to dozens ruined by Hollywood or who went hay- 
wire with a newspaper column. 

One. a beloved figure among elderly women and fanciers 
of Chic Sale humor, has Won millions of fans as a kind of 
latter-day Will Rogers. Yet he has the most genuine 
loathing of people Fve ever encountered. He honestly 
States evcr\body who works for him, despises all who 
shower blessings' upon him. and can’t wait to get to toe 
seclusion of his hotel after a show, there to lock himself', 
in against the world. . 

Another, \vhoni millions of moppets pray for each ever 
iiing, remembering him in their prayers along with their 
parents and dogs, submits to tons of publicity pictures each 
year showing him dandling bug-eyed toddlers on his knee. 
My wife recently said to him, “It must be wohderfulto be 
loved by so. .many children. Do you have any of jour 


"Hell, no," he said, quite offended. “I hale the 
■little ...!”, 

But by and large they’re a good lot. They take a healing 
from the more acid longucd critics; But. they must have 
this comfort: They burn up more material in a month than 
some of the imperishable vaudeville stars of old— on the 
Keith'-Orpheum. Pantages, Sullivan and Considinc time — 
did iq years. And reach more people. And work harder 
for what little they can keep in the way of w orldly -good- 4 -. 


and good citizenship, provide the best possible; entertain- 
ment we can, And if any of the irresponsible amongst us 
step outside the bounds of good taste and good citizen- 
ship,, there arc duly constituted. authorities tb bring them 
back in line. Within these confines we will make many, 
mistakes and. produce some trash; but if a proper propor- 
tion is| worthwhile and : entertaining, that wohdcriul 1)1- 
tie bid lady jn Keokuk w ill be on our side. 


Forty •eighth Anniversary 

Wednesday, January 6, I954 


As new television outlets spring up almost daily and as fewer and 
fewer areas remain without television, network radio finds Itself on 
the horns of a constantly growing, dilemma. The Webs are losing their 
audiences, and consequently their billings. In the battle to regain 

answers to be sure, but at least inklings of what can be done. CBS 
has inaugurated a new era in radio journalism with its series of dociD 
menfaries under Stuart Novins and his unit has undertaken projects 
formerly in the province of the print media— and done them better, 
With intensive research and preparation - and lots of good legwork, 


(V.P.. ABC Talent and 

Competition, like Variety, i s the 
spice of show business. One should 

Vision Screen for the loudspeaker to give a listen to these. NBC too 
has evolved pure radio in its “Weekend** concept, and shuttling back 
to CBS, the web has struck a potential vein of listener, gold in its 
"Stage Struck.” 

Radio must use its natural advantage over TV. It can move faster, . . .... 

get into smaller places, it can evolve from the work of one on-the-spot around better television means 
man with a pocket transmitter of tape machine rather than an an- more viewers, 
nouncar, cameraman, audio man, director and engineer. It must use In our shop, we are trying to 
its advantage of reaching audience where TV can’t— in the automobile, diversify Just as a movie theatre 

petitors, but we should try to excel 
00 in relation to Our own standards 
ck Having learned, after years ‘in 
its the theatres, that if every show 
was good, everybody did better 
er, business, so I .believe that all 

those audiences, they’re faced with a dual problem: first, to justify the documentary unit has come up with' exposes and studies of condi- understand that we should not only 

their existence; second, to reawaken the public’s awareness, not in .tions in this country that are sweeping and dramatic in scope. They're be as good or better than our com- 

radio (because the public is aseare of radio), but in network «dio. ... 7*' 

Question of justifying their existence is a more crucial One than they vision screen for the loudspeaker to give a listen to these. NBC too in relauon 10 opr own standards. 

WOuld. like to admit, and becomes more critical as TV expands. Ex- has evolved pure radio in its "Weekend" concept, and shuttling back Having learned, after years -in 

perience has shown in nighttime radio that in the fields of . drama, to CBS, the Web has struck a potential vein of listener gold iri its the theatres, that if every show 

comedy and general entertainment, people prefer to see and listen "Stage Struck.” was good, everybody did better 

than to listen alone. The networks are faced with the reality that in Radio must use its natural advantage over TV. It can move faster, business, so I believe that ah 
the field Of entertainment as it’s now constituted, television is in the get into smaller places, it can evolve from the work of one on-the-spot 
catbird’s seat and will continue to be so in terms , of audience and man with a pocket transmitter of tape machine rather than an an- 
revenue. nouncer, cameraman, audio man, director and engineer. It must use 

The webs may point to their morning and afternoon strength to its advantage of reaching audience where TV can’t— in the automobile, 

dispute this. But that strength is a tenuous one at best— television the factory, the store. Americans like to Work and play with a radio 

is making giant strides in daytime programming, and the top agert- at their sides. Network radio has these advantages over TV, but thus 

cieS arc preparing, for the plunge into daytime video. Morning tele- far it hasn’t made proper use of them. Local radio has, and it’s pro ? it- 

vision too has jumped, and the morning TV habit has taken hold more ing; network radio, by contrast, hasn’t and it’s feeling the pinch. An 

rapidly than radio experts like to admit. There’s no question that example of local radio’s initiative is the series (first summer, now 

the factory, the store. Americans like to Work and play With a radio should have a change 0 ! pace, daily 
at their sides. Network radio has these advantages over TV, but thus TV programming should make the 
far it hasn’t made proper use of them. Local radio has, and it's profit- saiim try. The problem is not <-0 
ing; network radio, by contrast, hasn’t and it’s feeling the pinch. An simple in. TV.- Many- shows are re- 
example of local radio’s initiative is the series (first summer, now d.uircd nnd many sponsors have tp 
year-round) of where-to-go capsules on WNEW, N. Y. for General be satisfied. And sponsors must 
Motors Acceptance Corp.,- a natural for the. driver and auto sponsor sell merchandise, 
alike. Accepting this theory, the ques- 

N°twork radio has a function and can perform it, but its job is to tion is what can be done about it? 
go through some thorough soul-searching and come up with new con- First of all, the best available 
cepls of that, function. Once it finds a raison d’etre and goes about talent must be mobilized. Not only 

soapers on network radio are here to stay — -they allow the hausfrau year-round) of where-to-go capsules on WNEW, N. Y. for General 
to go about..her work and at the same time provide her with enter- Motors Acceptance Corp.,- a natural for the. driver and auto sponsor 
tainment, something that television can’t do. But as more and more alike. 

housewives switch to TV in the daytime, how many radio networks Network radio has a function and can perform it, but its job is to 
can support themselves on the basis of soap opera coin alone? . go through some thorough soul-searching and come: up with new con- 

This situation brought about by the expansion and refinement of cepls of that function. Once it finds a raison d’etre and goes about 

television leads to the question of self-justification. if television: is £l " ln ® t U ,l ‘Ti aud .' '1' " d sp °" sols wl11 “ me »»?*»<•».*•» 
going to take the play a*ay from radio in (he general entertainment epe of the old adage of building a better mousetrap. Do what televi- 
field! ivhat then can network radio programming do that a local station s.on and local radio can’t do and you re in business, 
can’t do as well? Music and news? In most cases, no. The fantastic 
development of the recording industry since the introduction of the 
LP has made music available to even the lowliest 250-twatter. The 
wire services likewise have made news available to the stations as 
quickly and surely as it’s available to the networks.' 

Programming Ripley 

if the function of network radio is to instantaneously transmit to Rv fARI c wiiin 

all afiiliales programming which they otherwise would be Unable to . . D J ■ * r v * 

attain^but programming which gets audience-r-how does it justify (General Manager, WCBS Radio, N. Y.) 

its existence when the only programming it can offer which will at- There’s a wonderful song in pered the mixture by scheduling 
tract audience is the very same type of programming the station can Rudgers'& Haffinrerstein’s "Me^ and' lively, personality-gal — Joan 

produce i.self. Juliet” called "The B ; g • Black wards 9:30 just ahead of God- 

This dilemma explains what on the surface appears to be a paradox - rt „ u v Uaiiv rhdr a rtpH 7 oc ac frey s network sh6w - 

— the fact that while network radio has been barely able to hold its u ■’ 1 ^- VIiaiIy cnaiacxenz '- s » as . In the afternoon we lured Emily 

own in terms cf billing, local revenues in most of the country have J'°M probably remember, the great, Kimbrough away from the Writing 

risen to alltime highs. It also explains the constant increase in sales expectant mass of people who sit and lecture field to do a mature 

aC TUiV UaUm 4... a j rrt^r • . . _ i ri 

of radio. sats. This holds true in even the most highly saturated TV 
market:— New York, for example, has seven television stations, but 
almost all its AM outlets report substantial gains in revenue and 
profit, with at least two of them reporting record gross billings this 

Motors Acceptance Corp.,- a natural for the. driver and auto sponsor sell merchandise, 
alike. Accepting this theory, the ques- 

N°twork radio has a function and can perform it, but its job is to tion is what can be done about it? 
go through some thorough soul-searching and come up with new con- First of all, the best available 
cepls of that function. Once it finds a raison d’etre and goes about talent must be mobilized. Not only 
filling its functions, audience and sponsors will come a’flocking. It’s. 'a ‘ performers, but writers, directors, 
case of the old adage of building a better mousetrap. Do what televi- producers and musicians; 
siori and local radio can’t do and; you’re in business. This talent must be coordinated 

through executive staff with the 
entire sales organization. 

. Secondly, it must be understood 
that there is not one public, but 
many publics which combine to 
make the mass audience. 

Thirdly, there must be a realiza- 
tion that this public is fickle, tires 
easily, and therefore needs new 
entertainment stimuli. For this 
reason we should not be afraid to 
experiment with new faces, new 
ideas, and new formats. 

Only through this type of experi- 
menting, can we develop the kind of 
competition that is healthy for the 
entire industry. 

It is my hope that the new year 
will bring bigger and. better shows 

out front waiting to be entertained, and amusing afternoon commen- 

Looking back at 1953, it seems * ary * We changed the time on the 
. u ... already successful "Galen Drake 

to me that all branches of the an- show,” and we added a folk humor- 

tary. We changed the time on the to all the networks. There’s always 
already successful "Galen Drake roorn lor one more. 

year. On the other hand, the networks, while registering only a tertainment industry were pretty ist, John Henry Faulk, also a gifted ' cording lecture work composing, 

slight, ir.crease in gross billing at best, have brought in so much of busy during the year wooing that member of the lecture circuit, in etc., insofar as such activity would 

this fc’lling under trick sales formulae and overloaded.. discount struc- hi g hiaek piant with rpnpwpd ar . the late afternoon- aid in buildine the Dersonalitv s 

tures that the term “gross billing” is almost meaningless for comparison b^k Sjant renewed ar- 

pur poses. ■ dor. More than ever before, the 

Why has local radio made such substantial gains while network rev- audience, pur customers. Were our 
enue has barely been able to hold . its ground? Why has. national spot first arid foremost consideration, 
business skyrocketed upwards with the very -same sponsorship' -monies wp all nf iK-wpim thw , n H 
that were funneled out of the webs? Because local radio has entered ™ ’ a 7 us sc , , siage ’ * nd 
an era of specialization, specialization which draws audience and which P road casting people alike wanted 
the webs can't duplicate. Foreign language stations have made sub- new audiences, bigger audiences, 

big black giant with renewed ar- l ’ie laie aiternoon; . aid. in building the personality's 

dor. More than ever before, the , Now all these changes had four radio audience. 

audience, our customers. Were our a sic objectives. Actually, all these objectives 

j * t n „ on , nr .i. L Greater emphasis on "person- were quite similar. What we want- 

first and foremost consideration. a ii ze( j programming.” The in- ed to do was to take radio to the 

We, all of us— screen, stage, and crease in the number of radio people. We wanted, to bridge the 

broadcasting people alike — wanted sets in dens, bedroom, etc., meant gap between performer and audi- 

new audiences, bigger audiences, the decentralization of family lis- ence. We were trying to get closer 

there was more program planning new theory, granted, but certainly 
to please the individual, rather one that seemed right for the 

stantial grins; ferm stations will hold their audiences; an increasing for our shows. And WC went about fu2 g t0 3 degree - Therefore, to the bi a fi.ack giant. Not a 

number of urban stations have found ready audiences, in; the Negro winning them in different ways. to pleasl ThT SiCaD rathef one that selSed^dlbt ? f or tl e 

population via programming especially slanted for them; popular ;P P*ease ine l.nqiviquai, rather one xnaiseemeq ^ngne ior me 

music and news specialists find ready listeners and. ready bankrollers; The inovies tried new projection than the family unit. , times. The year 1953 gaye^ us a 

even classical music stations have found new sources of audience and methods to lure people a^vay from 2. Programming for easy> but ehance^ to test our theories to see 

coin. Run through the list of stations in any community— you’ll find home. The theatre went back to not casual > listening. V? W thG fh w , 01 : ked n p 0 ,^ 

a trademark on each station s programming, and that trademark Won’t basics with sceneryless produc- 3. Greater emphasis on talent fL rSippS'iSnE a S ; a L !t°‘\ 

be so much the network it’s affiliated with as the type of listener it tons, where actors actually read who could be equally entertaining h a n n pnp5 ^ a WiMn 

appeals to in its community: . their lines. Ballet hit the road and before a large convention audience, 

nvnkpri rnars nf annmninHnn fnr itc a lnnal nluh oulliaiunn n ngures Covering ine IWO lOCal I 

an the family unit. , times. The year 1953 gave us a 

2. Programming for easy, but chanc( ? to test pur theories to see 
>t casual, listening. how they worked out. And now 

' empkasis -talent take an objective look at what has 

Whither Webs? 

In the face of this 'fait accompli, where do the networks go? 

evoked roars of appreciation for its a local club gathering, a! civic or- 1 a m and 

onironi-iate onri oa ni 79 h gram ume periops lo iu a. m. anu 

entrechats and elevations even in ganization— or 
What the hinterlands. And while still phone. 

ShA I nA UOa ~ Pr 3 studio mi cro- 4-6 p . m. Mon.-Fri.) shows that in 
p ne * 1953 these time blocks have a 20% 

4, Greater emphasis oh talent higher share of audience than in 
with outside activities such as re- 1952. 

can they offer that the local station can't, and that television can’t comparatively new itself, television 
offer with more appeal? There are some obvious answers-^instantane- sought new audiences by introduc- 
es on-the-spot news reports at important events, musical events like in £ a number of stimulating, vigor- 
concerts and operas — in a word, communications. But will these alone ous * highly experimental produc- 
. be enough to support network radio? Not four networks, anyway. tions. 

Fortunately, the webs have come up with a couple of answers, partial Radio, too, was changing as 




Radio, too, was changing as 
local stations moved ahead with re- 
vitalized program patterns. Let 
me outline for you what has hap- 
pened at WCBS, New York, as an 
example of the pattern of. local 
radio station programming in 1953. 
Not that we did anything complete- 
ly new, or different, or startling. 
Stations all across the country 
were devising the’ir own approaches 
to appeal to greater audiences, but 
I know this station .best and it’s 
fairly illustrative of the direction 
in which local radio moved in ’53. 

In January of last year WCBS 
was in a fortunate situation; we 
were the No. 1 station audience- 
wise, in our market and, commerr. 
cially, we had a virtual sellout. Not 
content to rest, however, we want- 
ed new audiences, new sponsors. 

To win them, we had gone to 
work on our programs. Every Local 
daytime program (except news- 
casts) in the WCBS lineup had 
been rescheduled, revamped or re- 
placed within a 12-month period. 
We added live music, an instru- 
mental quintet led by Elliott: Law- 
rence, to our "Jack Sterling- Show” 
and tightened up its overall pro-? 
duction. We reprogrammed the 
8:15-9 a. m. spot with Bob Haymes, 
singer,, comppser, radio entertain-, 
er. W'e added more tape-record- 
ing, more field reporting to the 
"Bill Leonard Show” and height- 
ened its drama by putting it in a 
30 minute framework. We pep- 



.... Narrator- Actor 

MUrray Hill 8-6600 Radio—' TV— Films 

2 1 
z s 

. i;iafliiini||fi||||| U 

MniiiniiiiiiimiimiiinMii,i mmL .z 


• r "3 

Wt Jnr«l. y, JanUary . ^ 1954 V SSs*** Anniversary 

Religious Programming 

n Updated Reappraisal) 


t, = 

| | 
c 5 

niui!M«M"ro!!M!!!»!!!“ijj||||*jpy MALCOLM (MALY ■ BOYD!! 1 ""! r""""* 1 """ mumhmi. J i 

• J \ * 1 


ni» "i " 1 

air. Boyd is a former partner 
of Mary Pickford and Buddy 
Roa rs in MW. Inc., and for- , 
me president of the National 
society of Television Pro-, 
dutcfs; now a Candidate for 
Roly Orders in the Episcopal 
Church and a senior student at 
the Church Divinity School of 
the Pacific, in Berkeley, Calif . 

He will graduate from the. 
seminary and be ordained in 
t he Episcopal Church next 
' June.) 

Hollywood. .. 
If “religious’' programs on TV 
and radio are to achieve the im- 
pact which, will be satisfactory 
both to church bodies and to the 
industry, several apparent hurdles 
will have to be jumped, And they 
can be. 

An important TV or radio spon- 
sor doesn’t just launch a new pro- 
gram or even a schedule of spot 
' announcements without much seri- 
ous consideration; backed up by 
solid research along specific lines! 
V/iiat is the audience sought ? 
Where in this audience located? 
Will network do the job best, or 
will the most effective method be 
pin-pointing via specific markets? 
Is the sales message being geared 
ic people who do not know the 
product or company name, to peo- 
ple, who are rT-^i^iar with both but 
are buying a competitive product, 
or to people who are familiar with 
tire name and are buying . . . but 
who are now. asked to! buy a new 
product by the same manufacturer? 
In regard to the use of TV and 
. radio, by a. church, body, the sainC 
type of questioning must be pur- 
sued, and specifically it can be 
boiled down to this: are we trying 
to reach the churched or the un- 
churched with this particular pro- 
gram? The distinction is quite im- 
portant in this case because the 
"entire approach will be predicated 
on the answer. The terminology 
• semantics . being most important 
here), the. physical background, 
symbolism, the whole methodology 
will be based upon the answer. 
Lacking the answer, danger is ac- 
tually courted ... . danger of old 
prejudices and misinformation im- 
intelligenlly dealt-with and unreal- 
istically not squarely faced. 

The great success of Bishop 
Sheen has actually obscured a vi- 
tal point. His : success is that of a 
dynamic, personality, ideally suited 
, to the TV medium, 

If we will look back through the 
years at the efforts of church, and 
radio to achieve good religious pro- 
grams, \ve will find the memorable 
instances of success in terms of 
personalities: Fosdick, Sockmnn, 
Sheen. There has been a stagger- 
ing lack of specific creative ap- 
proaches. This is especially shock- 
ing when one realizes the enormous 
creative aspect of religion in a re- 
ligious man’s life. The minimum 
oi fresh creative thinking along 
lines of religious programming is 
ironical when one realizes that 
ciiurch bodies are interested in a 
& °ul among souls, a man among 
men, an individual located in the 
midst of a Hooperated-mass. But 
more frequently than not the 
church bodies have failed to reach 
the sought-for soul, man, individ- 
ual in the crowd. 

I Bypassng Sameness 

and^ the TV nets are in a position 
to do. something about this). The 
answer to badly written, directed 
and produced programs is good 
craftsmanship and solid creative 
work grounded in a professional 

This costs money. And so the 
idea of sustaining religious pro- 
grams must be. reappraised increas- 
ingly. If a program is to compete 
on every basis, from creative in- 
genuity and acceptable cir.ftsman- 
ship to plush treatment in regard 
to promotion and time slot, there 
appear to be two realistic alterna- 
tives: either the church body must 
put up the money (as in the case of 
the Lutheran-sponsored dramas) or 
commercial sponsorship must be 
acceptable, and therefore desirable 
both to commercial sponsor and to 
church body (as in the commercial 
sponsorship of Bishop Sheen). 

One more hurdle should be men- 
tioned here. The cleric who acts 
in a liaison function between 
church body and industry can, 
quite without being aware of it, be- 
come a counterpart of the dreaded 
“sponsor’s wife,” She became in- 
famous as the symbol for unneces- 
sary tampering with creative ef- 
forts, for authority which had to 
be handled with kid gloves while 
regarded with fear and contempt 
and for “no talent.” If the church’s 
liaison-functionary will seriously 
define his field of activity, this hur- 
dle can be eliminated. His job of 
consolidation is the basic one: he 
must represent the church in terms 
of the goal of a given TV or radio 
project and in terms of the motives 
underlying it, as well as the uses 
to which the project wilrbe put : 

It is most important that the 
industry understand why church 
hod ies are ; interested in radio and 
TV. It is vital that religious bodies 
understand how the industry func- 
tions and what the industry inter- 
est in religion is. The industry’s 
lifeblood is good programs which 
will attract audiences and sponsors. 

Not Television? 


The Lutheran-produced dramas ! paper, 
nave offered us; an interesting ex- 
periment to watch, as they repre- 
sent one of the few deviations in 
k- l lsi i a ^ Pattern of sameness in 
\liich TV is following radid. Ex- 
ibis particular experiment 
na the other rare deviations from 
J e pattern, one may make the 
overall obsei-vation, regarding TV 

, as r adio, that personalities 
a * e been oo *.*„*», 


Of the Various forms of tele- 
vision programs, the dramatic form 
has advanced the furthest and 
firmly established itself as one of 
the most important parts of TV. 
The filmed shows and live shows 
that cleverly integrate pre-filmed 
spots with live studio action are 
always improving and absorbing 
Hollywood motion picture tech- 
nique and finesse. This is espe- 
cially remarkable when one con- 
siders the limited amount of time 
and money that is available in 
comparison to Hollywood stand- 
ards and the tremendous handicap 
I required to produce a new show 
| every week, which when shown, is 
as forgotten as yesterdays news- 


used as “crutches 
♦a!, r lescn ^ati°n of religion, and 
cre ative approaches < in 
drama, panels and discus- 
es) have been notably lacking. 
rlll ,^ Pjten it has been felt by 
lop 1 ", 0 ! 1 b ?^ ies ’ especially on the 
a nr. eve ‘ that a good motive for 
ogram. compensates for a weak- 
sl/ou’ 1 ^ ^ ^p'ynright badly, produced 
cptin’rr a church body is com- 
Sion ng ' Vlth other sponsors for au- 
slotc Ce T ^ e ? men ts, in specific time 
or ctot - ^ ls n ot 'fair to a network 
Pp a «: a V on . to . Present a weak pro- 

on a network 


'.and, in TV 

However, with all Of the ad- 
vancements in the Various depart- 
ments, i.e., camera, iighting, set 
designing, direction, etc., there is 
still one glaringly weak and ama- 
teurish facet. This fault exists 
in spite of the fact that motion 
picture producers have long since 
recognized its tremendous Value 
as one of the most important fac- 
tors in the ultimate success of its 
great pictures. In many cases it 
is a known fact that a fine musical 
score, has been the difference be- 
tween a boxoffice success or flop. 

Television is still using record 
libraries and soundtracks from 
so-called "library services” that no 
Hollywood 'B’ picture would dream 
of using. ; Not only is the music 
itself bad but the sound recording 
is the worst possible and instead 
of enhancing a fine job of acting, 
writing and' direction, this cheap 
and old fashioned library music 


Tins is Nora Drake ■ 
Radio— for Toni 
■Television Newspaper 
SU 7-5400 ’ 

cious stone in an inferior setting. 
It dulls the true beauty of the 
stone whereas the proper setting 
sets off the real beauty and high- 
lights the interesting facets. 

It’s the old story of penny-wise- 
pound-foolish. There are many 
fine dramatic shows in which the 
drama and humor could be clever- 
ly heightened by music properly 
composed for them. This neglect 
was understandable in the pioneer- 
ing days when everyone was grop- 
ing and there was no precedent 
established. Today the motion pic- 
ture industry, through many years 
of trial and error, has established 
the importance of various key ele- 
ments of successful pictures. The 
importance of music is an estab- 
lished fact. It doesn’t , have to. be 
proven to anyone today; fi?ast of 
all the public. No Hollywood pro- 
ducer of ‘B’ pictures would, dream, 
of using music of the inferior 
quality being used irt grade ‘A’ 
television shows nightly. 

Since TV is gradually absorbing 
the best of, the various motion pic- 
ture techniques and, of necessity, 
devising certain ones of it is own , 
there is no excuse for ignoring one 
of the most important of all. 

The first argument advanced of 
course would be costs, which is not 
entirely an honest one. The cost 
percentage-wise, as compared to 
the whole, is so small that. I’m sure 
any sound business man who real- 
ized how much could be added in 
value lor the few dollars intelli- 
gently spent, would not hesitate. 

The picture business has long 
since recognized the importance of 
the right musical score so why not 


DuMont Labs completed negoti- 
ations with' Herbert Mayer, prexy 
Of Empire Coil Co., for the pur- 
chase of UHF station KCTY in 
Kansas City, Mo., for an undis- 
closed sum, and on Friday (1) 
morning the FCC gave its approval 
to the changeover. Immediately 
turned over to DuMont’s broadcast- 
ing division, the station became 
the web’s -fourth o.&o. and its first 

KCTY has been set to receive 
tile full sked of DuMont’s program- 
ming, Ted Bergmann, network 
chieftain, disclosed after the pur- 
chase was announced. 

Other DuMont o.&o. is WDTV in 
Pittsburgh, Pa. 

since n 1 1S . be cojni»>g impossible ' makes the entire production look 
lior itfic^ 00 u at ^ ng structure dete- 1 and sound cheap. . I can only .coin-. 
' in the case of s a weak link ' pare this to the placing of a pre- 


BUtterfield 8-3859 

Strangest Thing Happened When 
I Left Berlin’s ‘Maskebar’ 


(NBC Commentator) 

On the occasion of a recent visit to Berlin, something occurred which 
I myself find it bard to believe— thougii the incident involved me and 
—what shall I say — the shades of Adolf Hitler? 

I went with a group, of American newsmen, after dinner at the Press 
Club to a place of entertainment called the Maske- 
bar, or the Mask Bar. The girls wear masks — that . 
is, up to midnight, when they take them off. One 
of the boys made ail unkind erkek about that. The 
girls are not very pretty, or very young, and Joe 
Fleming of the UP said: “The management fig- 
ures that by midnight they've taken in all the 
dough they can, so there’s no harm in letting you 
see the facts of life.” 

It was just about this time that I left. I had had 
enough smoke and bad air. I got outside, hailed a 
taxi, and drove slowly through the streets of Berlin, 
looking at the ruins in the moonlight. When we 
came to the Reichs Chancellery— or what’s left of 
it— I stopped the cab, paid the; driver,, and Wan- 
dered in among the ruins of the building where Hitier breathed his last. 

It was an eerie place. To describe it, I would need the morbid and 
melancholy phrases of Edgar Allan Poe. And my moOd was suited to 
the scene— or I would not have been fible. to believe what happened 
next. .■ : " V . 

A figure stepped out of the darkness and approached me. It looked 
for all the world like Adolph Hitler. It came close. There was the 
cap with the high crown, the puttees, and the ridiculous little mustache 
— though I noticed the mustache was a triflle singed. 

The figure stopped and addressed, me. The very tones of voice were 

“I have waited eight years for this,” he said, and I recalled it was 
just eight years ago to the day since Hitler’s death. “Eight years, and 
when I return, what do 1 find: but an American!” 

Leon Pearson 

Willi Tliat Tie, What Else? 

“How do you know' I am an American?” . 

“By your necktie. No one but. an American would wear monkeys on 
his necktie.” 

“There was a time,’’ I said, “when we had to take insults from you. 
Not any more.” 

“Oh, no?” said Hitler. “Are you not taking insults from my people, 
my German people?” 

“Certainly not.” I said. 

“Then what is the meaning of this phrase I have heard only tonight,”, 
he said— “ ‘Ami, go home*. ‘Ami’ means American, no?” 

■ You don’t understand,’’ 1 retorted, “the Germans on our side don’t 
say such things. It’s only the Germans on the other side,” 

"What do you mean,” asked Hitler! “by our side and the other side?” 

“I am speaking of the different sectors of Berlin. For Occupation 
purposes, Berlin was divided into four sectors by the four powers. 
Those cries, ‘Ami, go home,’ come only from the Russian sector.” 

At this point,, an expression of amazement came across. Hitler's face, 
which could be seen even there in the shadows— amazement followed 
by a mischievous brightness of the eyes. 

“Then you arc not getting along with the Russians! Ha, ha! I could 
have told you. You are not getting along with the Russians!” 

Here his Voice rose so high I was afraid he would be. heard out in 
the street. He brought his arms up like, a puppet and he kicked his 
heels and did a little dance, that reminded me of the dance he did in 
the Forest of Coiupiegne in 1940. 

“I could have told you! Like you. I made a pact with Stalin, but it. 
didn’t work.” 

“The reason it didn’t .work,” I said, “is because you turned and 
stabbed him in the back.” 

“But when did it begin?” 

The Real Enemy 

“Well, I suppose the beginning of the Cold -War dates back . . .” 

“Ah. wdiat a beautiful phrase! So which is your real enemy today, 
Germany or Russia?” 

“Frankly, we do not consider Germany an enemy now.” 

“That's good! One of these days, you might even come around to 
helping my country — in spite of the old hatreds.” 

"We have a gigantic program — a very expensive program — for 
rebuilding the : strength of Germany.” 

Herr Hitler stared at me. Then lie moved closer and examined my 
necktie again. "You are an American, aren’t you?” 

“You don’t seem to realize, Herr Hitler, that much lias happened 
since your death. We now are rebuilding not only the industrial and 
commercial strength of Germany, but also the military strength.” 

“What? My soldiers will be back again?” 

“No. certainly not. No Welirniaclit. This will be a new' German 
force, integrated in a European Army, for defense against Russia.” 

“But we get arms again!” 

“Yes, if you are willing to take them. There seems to be some 

“Explain this — I do not understand.” 

“Well, your people seem to have had enough of War. an d we en- 
counter a little difficulty to persuade them. We are offering all sorts 
of inducements.” 

Hitler said: "We arc getting anus again without having to tear up 
a treaty?” 

“That’s right. In fact, without even having to pay for them. We 
are giving you arms. under the Mutual Security Program.” 

“But what happens to the French and the British? What do they say 
about this?” 

“They are co-sponsors of the plan.” 

Hitler had no comment at this. Ho merely stared at me. His jaw 
fell, w ; hich was rather a grotesque sight, for the jaw of a dead man is, 
at best, macabre. 

. I saw at once there was no point in trying to explain all this, so 
I merely said: “Herr -'Hitier; -you must remember you .have been dead 
for some time — ” 

“Eight years,” he said, “Only eight years. Can it be that — ” 

I started to go, but he moved toward me and seized my arm. “Wait, 
wait! Tell me one more thing: Do you believe in ■reincarnation?” 

“I don’t quite see the connection.” 

“If you believe in reincarnation,, perhaps there is hope for me. I. 
made v a mistake; Right here on this spot. I never should have done 
avvay with myself. If I could only find some magic potion that would 
restore me to life — do. you think there might be a place for me?” 

“Certainly not” I said. 

"Well, not in the Adenauer Government, but — ” 

"There’s no place for you, Iferr Hitler, in my camp.” 

"Well,” he said reflectively, “perhaps it is a little early. Put one 
of these days — ” 

Here he clicked, his heels again and did thfit grotesque little dance. 
"The Cold War?,” he said in a Shrill voice, “what a. beautiful thing!” 
And he Went off cackling into the catacombs. 

I left the place hurriedly, and went back to join my comrades. I 
decided not to tell them what I had seen, I was afraid they vouJdnt 
believe it. 



Forty-eighth p4i!Rt]£TY Anntvenary 

Wednesday, January 6, X954 


( Chairman , Department of Motion Picture s t N.Y.XJ.) 

Prof. Gcssner 

When universities first opened 
their doors for business back in 
the days which we now label, with 
a straight face> The Dark Ages, the 

p r of e s s o rs 
taught the 
problems v o f 
k e e- p i n g 
healthy and 
out of jail, To- 
day, some 10 
centuries later, 
that d o u b 1 e 
billing of Med- 
icine and Law 
are still ter- 
rific grossers 
—people insist 
on becoming 
Jll and delight in law-breaking— but 
new attractions have been added. 
The latest of these is Television, 
Which threatens at this writing to 
steal the show. 

Tills is the most sensational up- 
heaval in modern education. There 
has been nothing comparable, since 
colleges discovered football was. big 
business. Next to possessing an 
imposing athletic plant no self-re- 
specting university wants to be 
caught dead without a TV setup. 
Michigan State, for instance, is 
equally proud of its Rose Bowl 
performance and its rosy TV stu- 
dios. Some schools, such as the 
University of Southern California 
and Rutgers, at the close of the 
football season were more pleased 
with their cathode rays- than their 
forward passes. 

This phenomenon is more sur- 
prising when you consider how re- 
luctant for so many centuries were 
universities in accepting such a 
staid art as the drama. Only a few. 
years ago Harvard shook its leo- 
nine head against Professor George 
Pierce Baker’s notion of erecting a 
student theatre. It has taken some 
long years for academicians to ad- 
mit that niolion pictures, like the 
horseless carriage, is here to stay. 
Our Department, founded in 1941, 
is still the only four-year curricu- 
lurii in the country. 

Jet-Propelled TV - ! 

ever since, was: “What are you do-* 
ing about Television?” 

It was a query- which sent us 
into a one-man Committee for the 
Investigation of Undercover Tele- 
vision. Television had not yet In 
those days come to life. It was, 
however, clear even on a seven- 
inch screen that this was primarily 
moving images. That they were 
transmitted electronically, not via 
celluloid, seemed secondary. The 
creative, requirements of a story, 
acting, sets, etc., through technical 
facilities _ of camera and editing, 
were obviously an electronic. eXr 
tension of. motion picture tech- 
nique. The result was that the 
Department of Motion Pictures was 
assigned the responsibility of in- 
struction in the field of Television. 

..'TaiiVt the Same - 

But. jet-propelled Television 
hasn’t had to hoe an earth-bound 
path. Like atomic energy,, nobody 
understands it but everybody 
wants a slice of it. Publicity de- 
partments want it for promotion, 
athletic departments for revenue, 
Drama departments for drama, 
Speech for speakers, Radio depart- 
ments to replirce - a^ytngncraft.'Not 
unlike the fairy princess in the 
castle, the suitors woo her for her 
dowry without considering whether 
the marriage will be happy. 

. Television can be all things to all 
men. It can extend a university’s 
public relations, it can bring in 
money for bigger and better ath- 
letic scholarships, it can transmit 
lessons into living rooms, it can 
educate as well as entertain. 

' Although a university’s prime 
purpose is instruction, the main 
emphasis to date has not been on 
courses of study in the field of 
Television. The chief obstacle has 
been an absence of trained teach- 
ers who know the medium as well 
as the reluctance of professional 
practitioners to take time off for 
teaching. The cost of facilities is 
an obstacle to private institutions, 
such as NYU and Columbia, not 
so for the state-endowed Universi- 
ties of Illinois, (Oklahoma, Michi- 
gan State. Ohio, University of Cali- 
fornia at Los Angeles, etc, 

. Television has entered college 
through the front door, but it’s 
roaming the learned halls looking 
forlornly for a classroom. The 
academic question of.’ how you 
teach Television is quite similar to 
the production question of who 
best produces shows— radio people, 
motion picture people, or live TV 

Our experience at NYU might be 
of interest to those in the indus- 
tries as well as in the colleges who 
are vexed by experiences of their 
, own. The first college course for 
credit in the country began in 1945 
in the Department of Motion Pic-, 
tures, as the result of, curiously, 
an innocent inquiry from Barney 
Balaban, president of Paramount 
Pictures. The question, which has 
been repeated I am. sure in a hun- 
dred different climes and climates 

Because Television has been 
commercially sponsored through 
agencies who have been sponsoring 
radio programs and because Tele- 
vision has been transmitted by 
commercial companies! previously 
operating exclusively in the field 
of radio, there has been the popu- 
lar misconception that Television 
is closely related to radio. This has 
been similar to saying that, painting 
is like music because people ( pay 
for both. There is no doubt that 
the commercial on a radio show 
and the commercial on a television 
show are the common goals of an 
advertising agency, just as the 
selling of time on a radio program 
and time on a television program 
are the common objectives of a 
network. But as far as The For- 
gotten Mari, the Audience, is con- 
cerned, the Commercial is what he. 
is willing to suffer, like breakfast 
oatmeal, before the aromatic eggs 
and bacon and coffee. To confuse 
the issue for the myopic, it was the 
radio companies which first began 
broadcasting visjual images. Every 
month that passes Miss Cathode 
Ray swells in embarrassing dimen-: 
sions, betraying, her prenuptial 
affinity with Oscar of Hollywood, 
so that the day of the shotgun wed- 
ding, can no longer be postponed. 

At any rate, by teaching our stu- 
dents camera, lighting, editing, 
sets, costumes, make-up, and all 
the visual . language of story telling, 
our students have been enabled to 
pursue, with talent, careers in both 
celluloid and iive television. To us, 
Television is an . electronic trans- 
mission of moving images, and to 
the audience it matters not whether 
these images arrive, in the living 
room from celluloid or an elec- 
tronic source. An image is an 

Can Anyone Be Funny 

N. J,? 


Season’s Greetings 


(Uncle Wethbee, too) 

image is an image for o’, that, an’ 
that an’ o’ that, and with due 
apologies to the prosody of Robert 

Schools throughout the ages have 
been .charged with the responsi- 
bility of study and research .in 
fields which have later benefitted 
commercial enterprises,. and this is 
no less true for Television. We tori 
need our support from those who 
would most benefit by training pro- 
grams and experimental prodiic- 
ductions. The Television industry 
should not commit the shortcom- 
ings of the motion picture indus- 
try by failing to appreciate the 
value of training young people for 
future programming. Already it is 
evident that Television burns up 
talent faster than any other enter- 
tainment enterprise. Nothing could 
be more disastrous to both to the 
educational and entertainment re- 
sponsibilities of Television than 
the neglect of talent which is 
needed to staff the potential 2,000 
TV stations designed for this coun- 
try.' This responsibiliTy is so fright- 
ening that only venerable 'profes- 
sors might be the sole ones willing 
enough to enter where others fear 
to tread. 

Why not set up a TV Industry 
j Training School, supported by all 
the networks? The idea speaks for 
itself, but who will speak up and 
call the meeting to order? 

I am older today, and I know that 
nobody— not Mark Twain, not S. J>: 
Perelman, not Aristophanes— could 
write a funny show about. Plain- 
field, N. J. 

But this hap- 
pened many 
years ago 
When I was 
young and 
f o o 1 i s h and 
dauntless. I 
got a call one 
day from a 
man who had 
been at col- 
lege with me 
?ind was now 
in the radio 

Max Shulman 

producing . business. . He had, he 
said, an idea that would pay me 
large sums of money for a few 
minutes’ light work each : week. 
Dazzled, I went forthwith to his of- 
fice. Here I was further dazzled; 
The office was panelled in walnut* 
-and my friend, who . had been at 
college, a tacky and saturnine fig- 
ure who spent his days skulking 
about in the library stacks, .had now 
blossomed into a florid fellow with 
porcelain caps and a spread collar. 
What’s more, he called me “Lad- 
die.” -v 

. So beguiled was I by the walnut 
panelling, the gleaming dentition, 
the spread collar, and the Laddie 
that it completely escaped my no- 
tice that the project was in- 
capable of achievement. He want- 
ed me to write a furihy show about 
Plainfield, New Jersey. This was 
to be a sample script, the first of 
a proposed series about typical 
American towns. After Plainfield, 
I Was to write further hilarious 
scripts about such mirth-generating 
centers as Wilkes-Barre, Youngs- 
town, Fort Wayne, Cedar Rapids 
and Duluth. It was hoped to inter- 
est a motor car company in spon- 
soring the. series, the sales pitch 
being that anybody who heard 
these jolly broadcasts would leap 
instantly into his automobile and 
drive off to visit these capitals of 

With a clap on my back and no 
money for my trouble, my friend 
sent me off to Plainfield, where I 
was somewhat dismayed to find a 
conspicuous absence of sportive- 
ness. The natives were sober, bor- 
dering on the funereal. They 
walked down the cheerless streets, 
bent on their dingy business, arid 
when I explained iriy mission in the 
town, they cast me a cold eye, I 
was pretty dispirited myself when 
I left Plainfield that night, carry- 
ing with me a few fly-blown parri- 

l > f ™ m the librai *y and Cham- 
ber of Commerce. 

Back at my desk I read the p am 
phlets, quieted my trembling; an( I 
fell to work With the determin a tio2 
of, a man who has made an utter 
fool of himself and can’t face the 
thought. I rolled paper into mv 
typewriter and began: ; 

“Plainfield, the Queen City of 
New J ersey, lies in beautiful 
Watchung Mountains, 24 miles 
southwest of New York City. Here 
40,000 good burghers live in trim 
homes on wide, clean streets, if 
you’re a Plainfield resident, you 
can spend your Sunday afternoons 
at one of the city’s 16 parks and 
playgrounds— playing baseball, ten- 
nis, softball, soccer, archery, lawn 
bowling, horseshoe pitching, crick- 
et, field hockey, football and skat- 
ing. And if you spend your Sun- 
day afternoons doing all these 
things, you can spend your Sun- 
day evenings at one of Plainfield’i 
three modern hospitals.’’ 

(There, thought I, there’s a joke. 
This isn’t so hard when you put 
your mind to it. I continued typ- 
ing.! » 

“Plainfield has 14,521 telephones 
on which 71,838 calls are made 
daily. Four hundred telegrams 
are sent each day and Plainfield 
citizens own 14,690 passenger cars 
and 1,805 truefer . The. local post- 
office each year sells $279,000 
Worth of stamps, the glue oq the 
back of which tastes just as awful 
in Plainfield as anywhere else.” 

(See, said I to myself. Another 
joke. This is turning out to be a 

“There are 10,395 water meters, 
14,996 electric meters, 13.467 1 gas 
irieters, and 135 meter inspectors 
—all with sore feet.” 

(What a fool I was to ever doubt 
this thing! Why, this will bathe 
funniest document since “ Floogle 

“Plainfield’s industries include 
motor trucks and busses, printing 
presses, tools and hardware special- 
ties, hats, dresses, adhesives and 
broad silk — broad silk is different 
from ordinary silk; the silkworms 
are "fatter .. .’V 

That did it. Suddenly the ' whole 
brave sham collapsed. I rose, 
sighing, from the typewriter; 
Young, foolish arid dauntless 
though I was, it was clear eveh to 
me: nobody can be funny about 
Plainfield, New Jersey. 

I never subhnitted the script to 
my friend, but it didn’t matter any- 
how, because the project died 
aborning. My friend^soon left radio 
and went to Hollywood. Todaj 
is with Orange Julius. 


On Television arid Radio for ABC 

j <n • 


But Stanton Snags GM 

First break in the Chesterfield- 
Arthur Godfrey relationship came 
last week with the ciggie outfit 
stepping out of the Wednesday 
night “Godfrey & Friends” on 
CBS-TV but staying on as an alter- 
nate. The breach was filled im- 
mediately, however, when web 
prexy Frank Stanton personally; 
went to bat to swing General 
Motors into the skip spot effective 
with show of tonight (Wed.). 

Chesterfield’s halving of i's 
sponsorship is indicative of a gen- 
eral cutback in major spending tlmt 
probably stems from recent Di- 
verse medical reports on smokh'O’. 
The GM deal, on the other hand :3 
an important gain for CBS since 
the motor outfit has devoted most 
of its “special” TV splurging to 
Shows on NBC. Just how Godfrey 
himself figured in capturing GfljV 
coin is not known, although God- 
frey and Defense Secretary 
Charles Wilson, former GM proxy, 
are close friends. 

Starr New TWA Prez 


Hugh Wedlock lias resigned as 
prexy of the Television Writers of 
America, western region, citing ‘a 
heavy writing schedule” as. his rea* 
son. He is succeeded by Ben Starr, 
who was v.p, Wedlock will remain 
On the exec board, . 

Nate MonastCr, as exec boar! 
member who garnered most vote* 
in the recent TWA election, step* 
up to v.p. 




Wednesday, January 6, I954 



(Director, TV-Radi.o Workshop, Ford Foundation) 

One of television’s problems is pusliing them around, interrupting^ “ " 

that too many programs are writ- their tram. ef tlmaght.^hy sbould- 
ten on the back of a rate card, television be difTerent? Salesman- 
Theix* appears to be no embarrass- ship can be direct and convincing 
ment in asking a capable writer or and still not intrude on -the cus- 
produeer to routine his program ( oiiicrs’ sense of the iitness 01 
for arbitrary interruptions of arbi- things. 

trary lengths, for the presentation is it possible that some copy- 
of completely irrelevant material • Writer some day will convince his 
Without adequate transition. ■ associates that the mechanical 

This arises directly out of. . the ■ workings of an electric toaster 
fact that program producers take ; might be interesting to the audi- 
f or granted a set of rules which ciice? Breathes there a woman 
have not been revised since the j with soul so dead . that she will not 
days when the “bean ball” was out- respond to a sonnet instead of an 
lawed from baseball. It seeivis that exhortation; to buy cosmetics? 
no one has given mature eonsici- j Business is business, but Lever 
oration to the bean ball in televi- : Bros, decided to do their business 
sion. Just as the audience is at- : j n a spectacularly handsome build- 
tuning to a good set of characters , n g t . a hd Lord & Taylor display 
arid a good plot, out of the tube ; tiieir wares in windows that easily 
conies the baseball traveling ninety [ ma t c h most Broadway set designs, 
miles an hour arid hitting you right j u .is remarkable that so many ad- 
ori the head. You are given One yeitisers turn their television show- 

minute to recover from the blow, ' cases into bargain basement coun- mvT t ma \t 

and sort out the characters and s ters without taste or design or any JUHM IILJjMAJN 

plot in your mind when the show ; effort to show their products in an TelepixXfws—SthTear 

resumes. ! interesting and informative man- For Con Edison 

The bean ball was invented -in j iter. -.It is riot , impossible to iinag- — WB1X— 

order to make a batter duck, scare line that a prominent performer — — — — — s 

Can Do It Alone 


It’s no mere coincidence that a. sportscaster can come up with a triyri- 
ad of pertinent facts during the play-by-play of a sports event. The 
keyword is research, not just before every game, but during the actual 
course of the game itself, with a ready, willing and able staff standing by. 

My kid brother, Larry, has the all important job 

of gathering and collating this important statistical • 

information for me. Without it, no sportscaster , ~~ 

can possibly do an adequate job. Larry digs up # * 

background information on each player, as well as ' •• 

alltime records of the teams and the competition. , iSP 

At least a week of preparation goes into every ' 

football game I cover. After brother Larry lets fm? ' 

me have all the material, I study it. I carry the 
lineup in my pocket and spend every spare minute 
memorizing the numbers and corresponding play- 
ers. I’ve got to know each football team thorough- 
ly before the weekend, as though I’ve been playing : 
with them. I make it my buisness to get to the M , AM 
site of the game at least one day ahead. Then I 
interview each coach, watch films of his team in action. I ask him 
all sorts of questions, including some about the opposing team. The 
latter is an effective device, sometimes, to find, out all about the 
strengths and Weaknesses of the adversaries. Thus, by the time the 
game starts, my head is cramiried with info about all players, their 
fortes, their shortcomings, their personal quirks and their favorite 
plays. Since the scene changes every week, this becomes quite a chore. 
I’ve got to keep in iriind the three essentials. 1, Accuracy. 2. Speed 

Mcl Allen 

him away, strike him out. Slow- might undertake to associate him- perimentation in television adver- ip translating action into words. 3. Adding color, 
vitted batters sometimes caught it self with a product on television,. Using, and the integration of pro- rn,. „„„„ 1? i flAl t. i-, ' ... 4I 

on the head and were left dazed, provided her appearance gave her gram material with the tone and v it i ^ V 1 ® ' 
There is no scientific proof that more to do than, the standard eri- nature of the advertising is not so and this association enables me to gather a wealth ot anecdotes 

advertising's bean ball has the dorsement. It is conceivable that difficult that it could not be tried, apout tne players. 

same, effect on the customers, but Herman Wouk or William Saroyan, Nobody likes the pitcher Who Television has not decreased the need for research. In fact, it has 

t as much as the 
)’s and q’s. How- 
who are riot corn- 

row called. Therefore, if televi- i sketches that would -involve the mercials need are a few hurlers pletely familiar with all the aspects of the. sport. The finer points must 
sion's bean hall can sell goods even .product without over-involving it. who have plenty on the ball and a be explained to them. I believe it is a sportscaster’s job to develop 

when the audience ducks, how; j 
much would they buy if they really ’ 
liked the salesman? 

. For the past year the American ; 
Machine & Foundry Co., gen- ■ 
erally known as AMF, has pro- , 
duced among the most absorbing i 
television commercials.' Their in- ! 
terest is not only because their . 
products /include a pretzel bender. | 
an automatic pin spotter and a; 
power tool machine, any of which 

In short, there is a place for ex- 1 change of pace. 


fV.P. in Charge of Sales, CBS Radio Network) 

power tool machine, any of which ; ^ as been most gratifying to for many of the stories on the con- 
1 u 1 ' 3 ^ 6 boring commercials if , note during this year, the accept- . tinning values of radio. 

Onl> they contained the orthodox v,,- .ymet- nf trarte nabprs of I fn n p m Ani Vi nf 

be explained to them. I believe it is a sportscaster’s job to develop 
new sports fans as well as please those who are already devoted fol- 
lowers. Arming yourself with information that can turn a factual ac- 
count into a human interest story helps achieve this end. 

Just stop to realize how many millions of women have become rabid 
baseball or. football fans because of TV. Do you think they would 
have “caught the bug” if the game hadn’t been explained to them? Do 
you think their attention would have held if the dull moments in the 
game hadn’t been leavened by pertinent comments? 

So you see, research is a necessary factor to “hypo” the play-by-play 
and increase the legions of fans. And the kiddos who help on the re- 
search deserve kudos. 



'ance by most of the trade pap^s of i During this Christmas month of . J , 

teuing aoout tnem and tJve { actua l side of the radio story, gift giving, more than 1.000,000 these W’omen are married. They 1 in so much of the trade press- 
pretzels, bowling pins The “death of a medium’’ type ar-.! radios wiir be purchased. The fig- purchase not just for themselves facts such as these presented here 

. .a ■ m ’ -w * . • I - J P # I 1 -. nr* -I. / !»• . .1 • »' 1 < /I . 1 < , ' 1 

01 home-made furniture. AMF has t i c j e has virtually disappeared 
demonstrated the very rhythm of - fact ; i can recall only one' 

♦ hatr* . niiPtnocc f riMrt m/r . . . 

their ^ businessr-piretzel twisting » pi eqe in recent months. In ! e ra ge monthlv number of radio sets sales messages at almost 43,000,000 local — in the minds and plans of 

machine m action, a pm spotter op- place this t vpe of article, most ' produced This is a staggeringly working men. Since surveys show advertisers and agencies. 

O- ^hinp- SS a n,,t a pvpr e v r th7n°^ ^ trade magazine writers and editors | large number. It represents an in- decisively the importance of men To give you the facts on this 

‘"'Ll 1 T ^ ; bave turned their attention to st a - 1 crease of more than 32C 0 Over last m buying so many different prod- phase of net work broadcasting, I 

if, S hpi lr th^ tistically sound and .carefully docu- ! year. And just as difficult to vis- «cts— foods and drugs, among xvi u have to quote from my own 
in .hV .iirfipnpo u-hA mv wp mented colurhns that, place the ; ualize is the related fact that since them— the evening advertiser is in network, w'hose figures are more 

rnmrnerrl* , ^ many media in their ‘ P^oper^ Might : thewar more than 112,000,000 sets a position to impress his message re adily available to me. 

. fhf f- and correct relationships. They haV e been produced. segment of the population. firs , „ mnnth , . 195 , 

• In ' ure quite likely will be far higher, 
such since more-than-a-million is the av- 

but for a family. Nighttime radio —are also the facts that have 
advertisers also can point their strengthened radio— network and 

commercials are as interesting as 


Ads to Fit the Mood 

many media in their proper light : thewar more than 112,000,000 sets a position to impress ms message readily available to me. 

and correct relationships. They '■ have been produced. °n this segment of the population. y .. « . -- .. f .qco 

have sought— with considerable Since virtually all homes are Finally, he has in his potential , j more advertisers than iri 
success— both to reflect agency and now radio homes these sets are audience 9,000,000 of tomorrow’s the comDarable months of 1952 We 

advertiser, thinking and, to exert broadening the base of the me- customers— the girls and boys in l iad hours ‘ We 

Since virtually all homes are Final.y, he has in his' potential 
; and sometimes more success— both to reflect agency and now radio homes these sets are k 1 audience 9,000,000 of tomorrow’s 

Greyhound Gorp. arid Scott thinking. 

leadership in the direction of that ..dium. Some, of course, are replace- 

ments. But the big bulk of them and men in college 

ituaiuuicia tuc 5114:5 ciiiu uuj a 411 1,^,1 ^ 1 , ■. 1 ^ „„ nr. 

y0Ung WOmen ; had a greater gross billing. ' 

Paper Co. have fashioned their ad - 1 The events of this year have cer- j are moving into automobiles, kitch- These nighttime advantages re 

I believe that the coming year 
will show a continuing increase in 

dication of the commercial succe s tions. And since the year s end is [ portables have been made this time. And because more people ! the American people continue to 

of doing business this way. tl ie traditional time for summa- jyear, and these are going on Week- are available as family units, there indicate their interest in our, me- 

Outside of a country carnival or tions and recapitulations, I want [ end trips and to beaches and on is more listening in terms of peo- dium. And I believe that in the 

sideshow, it is almost unthinkable to touch briefly on some, of the boat rides. pie- (as well as homes). This, of coming year, the press of our trade 

that a salesman could be most sue- major points of radio's strength— It’s painfully obvious that if so course, has a pleasant effect on the xv in continue its factual reporting 

r.ftccfni hv incuitint* trie pitcthinpi'S' I nntntc a-hifth hnvp h#»pn thp hasp? many Deode are SDending auite a advertiser’s cost-Der-thansand. — . %Vt AMil Ufl llAtActl'M rtf ll.'fk 

major points of radio’s strength— 

c-essful by insulting his customers, I points which have been the bases many people are spending quite a advertiser’s cost-per-thousand. 

bit of money in these sets they are 
going to use them. However, we 
can go beyond common sense to 
research and get some indications 
of their usage. In the. first week 
of March of this year, Nielsen re- 
ports that in the course of a week, 
36,000,000 homes listened to night- 
tirrie radio. And these homes lis- 
tened an average of nine hours 
and 20 minutes per week. In the 
daytime, 40,000,000 homes listened 
during the week. They listened 
an average of 15 hours and 46. 
minutes. These figures do not in- 
clude out-of-home listening. We 
know from data on this hard-to- 
irieasure phase of radio listening 
that the out-of-home audience is 
increasing and that it is a very 
large audience. . The 26,200,000 
sets in automobiles constitutes a 
bigtime medium in itself; 

of our medium arid its constructive 

The facts you have been reading 1 thinking on all media. 



Nighttime, Too 


"MAKE UP YU I K M jN'D'— C BS ’ 

These points have gained recog- 
nition rather rapidly and they have 
played a major, role in the strength 
that network radio is displaying. 
Another set of factors, combined 
with these, is adding to the strength 
of nighttime radio. 

Advertisers, like their trade 
press contemporaries, are becom- 
ing increasingly, aware of the fact 
that at night radio can. reach the 
. riomvorking housewife— just as it 
does by day— and that it also can 
reach the 18,400,000 women who 
work. The importance of this au- 
dience potential, is greatly magni- 
fied by the fact that over half of TV 




Wednesday, Januaiy 6, 1954 

Forty-eighth Anniversary 

’s Re 



(President, ABC Network) 

Usually, at the end of one year or the beginning of a new year— 
rnd often at points between these two extremes— business leaders and 
others pause to "point with pride” or "view with alarm” certain de- 
velopments in their industry or on wider horizons. 

. The same holds true for broadcasting, although 

’ '"1 most statements by network executives are in the 

"point with pride” category— and usually in the 
"we are the Number One network” subdivision. 
Network "A" claims supremacy on the basis of 
the Nielsen rating of its average program— but 
does not point out its clearance advantage, created 
by a government-controlled monopoly, responsible 
for this lead. Network "B” comes back with its 
claim for rating supremacy based on Trendex, 
and logically so, for in the competitive television 
markets Network "B” enjoys an advantage. But 
the question is— Who is really on first? 

Bobt. Kiotner ?fetwbrlc “B'' begins an advertising^ campaign de- 
signed to show commercial leadership, and pegs 
the copy to total annual gross billings, to date. Network "A” comes back 
quickly showing PIB; figures for the current month, and indicating 
that this month has been a turning point in the billing picture. Each 
network claims to be first, and each substantiates the claim-^-albeit 
on a different base. 

But the question is again— Who is really on. first? 

There seems to be some doubt— in the minds of not only the agen- 
cies and advertisers but also of the networks themselves — as to just 
who occupies first-base and who is on second. 

But there isn’t much doubt as to who is on third. That position* is 
occupied by the American Broadcasting Co. In terms of the generally 
applied criteria of ratings, billings or the other coarse "yardsticks 
used to measure the position of the first networks, the ABC Radio and 
Television Networks are on third. 

Robt. Kintner 


as "Judge Bradley Stevens” in 

Don’t Ignore Time & Place 


We believe that advertisers and their agencies are using the mag- 
nifying glass rather than the telescope to examine broadcasting. Their 
interest should be in the specific program or time period they buy, 
rather than the often misleading concept of the position of the entire 
network. Network "B” may have a charming, folksy emcee in its day- 
time radio programming, but ABC's morning serials consistently out- 
rate this personality among younger housewives. Too few advertisers 
are aware of this precise information. 

In television, Network "A” may lead in both ratings and clearances 
for all its dramatic programs, but ABC-TV, in open competition with 
all. networks, secured the "United States Steel Hour” arid we have 
every reason to believe our client is pleased with the association. 

There is no question that Lucy and Ricky are a fine, and very amus- 
ing young married couple/ They have done well, and deservedly so, 
ABC-TV has developed a situation comedy, "Make Room for Daddy,” 
as a vehicle for Danny Thomas, and those "in the know” forecast that 
this will be one of the top : programs of television. It is believable, 
warm, entertaining and funny; in time, it too should be a "first.” 

In a very real sense, then, the label of the Number One network, 
is a myth. There is no Number One network. When you examine the 
component parts of the individual networks rather than make the 
overall rule of thumb classification, there are several "first” networks. 

In the field of magazines, is McCall’s really the Number Three mag- 
azine? The answer is no. For when a reader has a copy of McCall’s 
in front of her, it is the Number One magazine for that time — it ab- 
sorbs her full attention. . The advertiser with an insertion in McCall’s 
does not have to consider the higher circulation, of Life or the. Ladies’ 
Home Journal, for to millions of readers McCall’s is the Number One 

The same holds true in broadcasting— to its audience, at the time 
of broadcast— the program and its network are Number One. 

Another analogy— hotels. In Chicago there are a number of fine 
hotels. Possibly the Ambassador East is the "first” hotel for Chicago. 
But the Drake, has certain suites and rooms far better than some of 
the less plush accommodations in the Ambassador. Vet, there are 
those who will only stay at the Ambassador regardless of the ac- 
commodations available. ABC, in both radio and television, has some 
Very desirable "suites.’ ■ Nonetheless, a few— their number is growing 
smaller every day — advertising executives who are "Ambassador-ori- 
ented” will not even consider accommodations at ABC. These are the 
few who settle for inferior accommodations just for the address. 


^ 888888 ^ 



Management— MADELYN KILLEEN, Circle 7-3648 

Miilioiis Look 
And Listen- 
One By One 


( Producer , CBS-TV ‘Studio One’) 

Television has rocketed to. its 
present popularity through an ever- 
broadening maze , of superlatives 
and awesome statistics. 

Today, with 
— — less than a 

' \ decade of 

existence be- 

W ' m hind it as a 

mass commu- 
nications me- 

of lives it is 

Felix Jackson capable of 

Felix Jackson touqhing . i ts 

stature as a "going business” is 
written in even greater sums. As 
show business, on a multimillion 
dollar scale, it is rivalled, in scope 
only by the vast Hollywood movie 

Yet, from the standpoint of en- 
tertainment, television presents, a 
most remarkable paradox. By the 
very nature of the audience it 
reaches,, its most pronounced qual- 
ity is intimacy. A quality, let me 
add, that is riddled with perils and 

. Foremost among them is the mat- J 
ter of audience complexion itself. 
Despite the astronomical figures 
that hang about it like an outside 
halo, and unlike its contemporaries 
in the entertainment arts, televi- 
sion must address itself, both audi- 
bly and visibly, to literally one per- 
son at a time. 

For the TV producer, this places 
the matter of programming square- i 
ly on a personal level and con- ! 
fronts him with a psychological ' 
hurdle unique in show business. 

This audience-of-one concept dic- 
tates a highly specialized approach 
to television production, if the me- 
dium is to hold its own in compe- 
tition with other forms Of enter- 

No Time For Trivia 

Television has no time ,to waste 
on butlers who. stalk across the 
stage to pour dipped accents into 
a telephone that jangles just as 
the curtain goes up., The show 
itself must get attention right 
away. It must literally shock its 
audience into attention— agreeably, 
maybe, but shock it nevertheless. 

We’ve been trying to avoid this 
pitfall on "Studio One.” I hope 
we’ve been successful. In "Dry 
Run,” for example, our story of a 
dramatic submarine rescue during 
World War II, we attempted to cre- 
ate with the first few shots an at- 
mosphere charged with suspense, 
and — as the story demands— frus- 
tration. In "Silent the Song,” we 
opened with tile dramatic clement 
of a famous opera singer stricken 
voiceless in the middle of an aria. 

But once the TV show has won 
attention, this, attention must be 
.held also, at a disadvantage pe- 
culiarly its own. One, two, three 
or even more people in a living 
room will not have the same reaC- 


By JAMES SHELDON ==^== =-^-— 

(NBC-TV Director) 

I’m not expecting Mr. Petrillo to give me a free life-long member^ 
ship card, but I’m putting in a pitch for live musicians! 

No one disputes the fact that- the play’s the thing and the writer 
puts his all into the words on the paper. The director translate* 
these to the TV screen. Ilis cast plays a vital part-^ond a wealth of 
acting talent is available to him. His sets create illusions— the best 
designers work regularly in the medium. Costumes arid makeup play 
similarly creative roles. The finishing touch lies with the musical, 

The theatre has demonstrated the Importance of music in giving 
form and shape to, a play— e g., "Streetcar,” "Death of a Salesman," 
"Seven Year Itch.” The movies have used it for years, and "High 
Noon,” "Third Man,” "Laura,” are but a few which attribute an im- 
portant part of their success to their music. 

The same thing should apply in television dramatics. But, what 
is the situation of the producer who faces the everyday realisms of 
money. When all the figures are In for sets, cast, script and director, 
there’s usually no money left for music. And, after all, there are 
recorded cues available. But, even if the right record is available, 
the director has to . tailor his action to the music, not vice versa as 
in the other mediums. Music does not have to be original all the 
time, but it should be custom made to fit the particular situation. 
Live, you can control not only the content blit the concept. The par- 
ticular instrumentation which sets the particular mood or character 
and helps the story along, This is not impossible, but much more 
difficult with records . . . plus the time element, of which there is 
never enough. Despite the excellent help of the most cooperative 
people at the networks, I can remember several occasions when I’ve 
wasted more time searching for the right record fpr a 15-second cue 
that it would take to sc ore a whole show live/ 

.• = . . 'Solo Backgrounde : | 

Some shows have gotten around this ... using solo instruments. 
Hank Sylvern does a beautiful job with the organ on "Suspense." 
Tony Mottola's guitar is an integral part of "Dainger.” Seme shows 
are able to afford a full orchestra. The large budgeted U. S. Steel 
series, of course , and t he , mu gh .smaller budgeted “Armstrong .Circle 
Theatre”— -which affords its directors the luxury of Harold Levey and 
15 pieces. And I know from my own experience as the original di- 
rector; of "Mister Peepers” that part of its success is due to the wit 
and humor of Bernie Green’s baton. 

And don’t think the audience doesn't know the difference. Last 
summer on "Studio One Summer Theatre” I had Billy. Nalle’s live 
piano back almost the entire show. We had moire requests for the 
name of the tune he wrote than we did for the name of the director! 
On "Robert Montgomery Presents” this past Thanksgiving, Ray Por- 
ter’s a capella nine-voice choir brought a continuity and flavor that I 
couldn’t have given the show with recorded music. The public knew 
the difference! ' 

It doesn’t always have to be a full orchestra. Some scripts might 
be better just backed by a small combination or a solo instrumenL 
And some scripts could manage very well indeed without the added 
luxury. But, if the writer knew live music was available how fnuch 
more leeway he would Have to achieve even greater effects. And how 
much easier it would be for the director to follow through and how 
much more exciting the final result would be for the audience — and 
the client. 

Since television has become the great monster that devours the 
talents of so many writers, actors, designers, directors and producer* 
—let it also feast on the musical genius. 

And, after all, since television, every client’s mother, sister and 
aunt have, become authorities on writing, designing, producing and 
| directing— why not let them be authorities on musicians as well? 

tioris to either fantasy Or comedy, 
that tiie same persons would have 
in a house, packed with hundreds 
of others./ There are no mass emo- 
tions, there is no mass stimulation 
—and there is no captive audience 
that has paid anywhere from S.60 
to $6.60 for its seats and is deter- 
mined to get its money’s worth. 

I The very fact that the TV show 
j plays to countless small audiences, 
scattered all over the land, gives 
the television producer a special 
kind of responsibilit.v. On Broad- 
way, for example, the theatregoer 
has advance knowledge of what he 

' is going to see. The reviews arid 
the advertisements have told him” 
whether the vehicle is suitable or 
unsuitable for adults, for children, 
or for both. 

No such previous warnings ara 
posted for the TV audience.' Th® 

, producer's effort must stand or fall 
on its spontaneous appeal, or lack 
of it, to a wide ranee of viewers, 
with an equally wide diversity of 
tastes. It must please as many as 
possible, bore as few as possible — 
and offend none at all. 'Meeting all 
these. specifications in a single show 
is quite a job. 

. X : 


•A * 4'* 

•• ■ • «V«kV 






Wednesday, January 6 , 1954 


f ( North American Director, French Broadcasting System) 

This has been a banner year for French Radio in the United States, 
with its successful contribution to the production of the National Assn, 
of Education Broadcasters’ tape network highlighting its program plan^ 

This ambitious project was added to the already existing schedule of 
regular shows sent out monthly by RDF. 

Since March 7, 1953, the French Broadcasting System has produced, 
for the TOO stations of the NAEB network, over 100 programs designed 
to promote and foster French culture through radio, and including such 
diversified material as great plays : in French, literary talks, dramati- 
zations of the lives of great composers, and discussions about such very 
controversial musical schools, as dodecaphortism and. concrete music. 

L'Avare by Moliere, Le Cid by Corneille. Hernani by Victor Hugo, 
and Cyrano de Bergerac by Rostand, have been among those plays 
presented in French by the celebrated Comedie Francaise which have 
iiiet with, success wherever they have been heard. In New York, they 
are broadcast over WNYC on Saturdays at 2 p.m. Modern dramatists 
have not been neglected in a series called “The French Theatre,” 
ivhich Includes' plays by Giraudoux, film producer Marcel Pagnol, and 
versatile, talented Jean Cocteau. A gamut of French composers and 
their works offers a panoramic audition of France’s contribution to 
riuisic from the 14th Century to the present day (WNYC— Sundays at 
noon r. Contemporary French Composers presented interviews with 
Arthur Honegger, Darius Milhaud. Francis Poulenc— to name but a 
jew— as well as Pierre Boulez, leading dodecaphonist and tapesichord- 
L*t. The American public was also privileged to hear the famed 
French Music Festivals of Sceaux, Versailles. Vichy, Besancori and 
SLrasbourg. as well as fascinating dramatizations of the lives of many 
great composers. Great Writers of France < Great French Poets and 
The French Academy round out the cultural programs for the NAEB. 
All of these shows are produced in Pari* by Magdeleine Paz. and-rr 

except for the Comedie Francaise and French Theatre programs — 

The ‘Telectronic 



Thanks To Those For "Whom I 
Worked in *33 and Best Wishes 
To All For A Happy And Prosper- 
ous 11)54. 

wm. keene 

' LE 2-1100 

all are in English, 

French Editorial Opinion 

Another important feature added to the roster of French Broad- 
casting System shows in 1953 is the French Press Review, a 15-minute 
- summary -of French edito rial opinion, shortwaved— from— Paris -4md 
presented every Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. over station WNYC. . 

In addition to the above, the French Broadcasting System (RDF) 
lias continued to produce. and distribute to over 350 stations through- 
out the country, as well as Alaska. Hawaii, the Virgin Islands, 
Panama. New Zealand and Canada — and over 100 stations in Japan— 
Its 20 regular programs a month: Masterworks from France (classical 
music*. Songs of France i for the folklore fancier), Paris Star Time 
(top tunes*. French in the Air (language lessons >. and -Bon jour 
Jtlesdames 'recipes, fashions, etc., strictly for the ladies), all pro- 
duced in Paris by a staff of Franco-American radiomen headed by 
Paul Gilson _and Michel Robida. 

. Heard every Sunday night from 11:30 to 12 Midnight over WNBC. as 
v. ell as 90 NBC network stations, is Stars _ from Paris, presenting 
Frances most popular stars— ^ -from perennial favorites Jacqueline 
Franco L* and Jean Sablon' to little-known but up-and-coming starlets 
Army Gould, Mouloudji and Michele Arnaud. During the summer 
months. Stars from Paris was also heard over 128 NBC network sta- 
tions. on Monday nights from 10:35 to 11 p.m., and met with a great 
deal of enthusiastic audience response. . ■ 

During 1953, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. broadcast the 
Music Festivals of France, both in French and in English, and these 
were also heard over some of the stations of the Universal Broadcast- 
ing System in the United States. 

All of the French Broadcasting System’s transcriptions are non-com- 
mercial, sustaining programs distributed free of charge, except for 
mailing costs, to stations throughout the country, as well as those 
other countries enumerated -above. . 

In addition, I have had the pleasure of appearing on one of Lilli 

• Continued on page 190/ 


St. Louis. 

A substantial part of. the pro- 
grams on Channel 9, the new edu- 
cational TV station here will in- 
clude music and entertainment ac- 
cording to Chancellor Arthur H. 
Compton, proxy of Washington 
Univ, and a member of the St. 
Louis Educational Television Corm 
mission. Dr. Compton said that dur- 
ing after school hours entertain- 
ment of worthwhile nature for chil- 
dren will be provided. 

Also the station will offer col- 
lege courses for adults in addition 
to programs for school use. Rich- 
ard J. Goggin, gen. mgr. of the 
station, said four major types of 
programs would be offered; educa- 
tional subjects during school hours; 
high level entertainment for chil- 
dren in late afternoons; adult edu- 
cation in early evening . and cul- 
tural and informative presenta- 
tions later in the evening. Approx- 
imately $150,000 is still needed in 
the campaign to raise $450,000 for 
tlie first three years of the station’s 

Chi’s 1,545,675 TV Sets 


Latest in the monthly surveys 
conducted by the Chi Electric 
Assn, pegs the number of TV sets 
In the Chi area at 1,545,675. 

. New installations during Novem- 
ber totalled 28,798, reflecting a 
seasonal sales' upbeat. 



Co-chairman, Publicity Committee 
SWG Television Writers' Group) 


Look back through the old files 
of Variety— along about the time 
radio was taking its first uncer- 
tain steps as the newest toddler in 
the family circle of show business 
—What does radio mean to show 
biz? Will it ever be as important 
as vaude, the legit or pix? What 
about the performers, the direc-. ( 
tors, the writers in show bizr— will i 
they make the transition into this [ 
new* field? Will they even bother ! 
w ith radio? 

These and a hundred questions 
like them were being posed in 
think pieces and dope stories by 
Variety’s muggs. 

In the past two years, during 
television’s period of painful ges- 
tation, a new generation of 
Variety muggs have been asking 
the same questions and exploring 
the same problems— this time 
about TV. This is by way of re- 
port from Hollywood of how thd 
screenwriter has taken his place 
(Continued on page 186) 

.America is standing on the 
threshold of a new era — the “Te- 
lectronic Age,” It is an age that 
symbolizes electronics, with visi- 
bility. It embraces the idea of a 
useful television system applied to 
everyday living. 

This newly-opened future for 
television has a great potential — 
one that goes far beyond the fac- 
tors of entertainment, education or 

The applications to which tele- 
vision can be put . are so vast that 
I have little doubt that the “Telec- 
troriic Age!’ will have a tremendous 
effect on our patterns of thought, 
morals, actions, commercial opera- 
tions and everyday living. 

Even with the great strides we 
have made with broadcast televi- 
sion programming and techniques, 
TV has only begun to scratch the 
surface of possibilities for which 
it can be used, 

Definitely* a major part of tele- 
vision’s future lies with industrial 
and scientific television. This im- 
portant phase of television’s future 
is not generally known or under- 
stood by the public. When all the 
possibilities of TV’s use in indus- 
try and science are revealed (many 
uses are classified under security 
regulations) it will probably stag- 
ger the imagination of the average 

Although the present role of tele- 
vision in industry and science is 
only a small fraction of what it 
will someday be, there already are 
some surprising instances of its 
use. These are spread over a suffi- 
ciently varied field to give a good 
picture of the all-inclusive role 
wfiiclv industrial television is des- 
tined to play. 

In the field of science, television 
is now considered as playing a 
vital role, with future possibilities 

! DuMont’s Superb Role | 

Recently, an audience of more 
than 1,200 military, men and busi- 
ness leaders, at a meeting of the 
National Advisory Committee for 
Aircraft at Lewis Laboratory in 
Cleveland, saw latest ramjet en- 
gine in action in a supersonic wind 
tunnel by means of DuMont closed- 
circuit television. The action would 
have been impossible to view with- 
out television. 

In conjunction with the Argonne 
National Laboratories, a division of 
the Atomic Energy Commission, 
DuMont assisted in the develop- 
ment of stereo, or three-dimension- 
al television; It utilizes a split 
screen and polarized glasses. Sci- 
entists, working from behind a 
lead wall with dangerous radioac- 
tive materials, manipulate me- 
chanical hands. The hands are at- 
tached to devices which are so deli- 




Twice Daily: 11 to 12 A.M. ; . . 7. to 8 P.M.— WMGM 
Direction: William Morris Ag'oncy 

* I cat * 1 t 5® t they pick up and pour 
small flasks and do other precis* 
laboratory work. The fact that the 
operator can see in three dimen- 
sions in such precision work givei 
him a much greater degree of ac- 

. The ability to send very fine 
high definition pictures via indus- 
trial television is a boon to medi- 
cal men. Television gives medical 
students a surgeon’s eye view of 
operative procedure. 

Previously, they had watched 
from amphitheatres, where the 
view was often blocked by surgeons 
and nurses who surrounded the op- 
erating table. Now, lecturers in 
nearby rooms can point Out to 
larger audiences surgical proce- 
dures and other pertinent points 
without bothering operating sur- 

In the study of bacteriology and 
other sciences, TV has contributed 
much progress. Slides, previously 
viewed through a microscope by 
One person at a time, Can now be 
seen on a TV screen by many per- 
sons at the same time. 

Scientists have employed TV as 
a third eye to reach inaccessable 
places such as volcano craters, 
crevices in ocean bottoms, and 
abandoned mine shafts. 

Not long ago the British govern- 
ment used a TV camera to locate a 
sunken submarine that went down 
with 75 men aboard, i 
In industry, as in science, there 
is no limit to the uses to which TV 
can be put. For instance, a utility . 
company employs TV as a means 
of checking smoke conditions at 
power plants smoke stacks. 

Many companies use closed-cir- 
cuit television to hold sales meet- 
ings between distant points. Rail- 
roads are exploring the use of TV 
in checking 1 switching on incoming 
and outgoing trains. 

Television plays a vital role in 
relaying messages to many people 
Separated by great distances in a 
short period Of time. 

A great degree of imagination is 
required to visualize the astound- 
ing possibilities of industrial tele- 
vision. In the not-too-distant future 
it will become a necessity rather 
than a luxury. 

To the average person, television 
today means sports, drama, variety 
shows and news programs. To the 
television scientist, it means a 
milestone in technical and scien- 
tific advancement, an electronic 
key for solving industrial as well 
as scientific problems. 

Sat. Farm Show Next 
On NBC-TV Chi Agenda 


Latest offbeat program idea to 
be tossed in the hopper by Chi 
NBC-TV exec producer Ben Park 
and his web programming crew in- 
volves a farm show angled for a 
Saturday morning time slot. Willi 
the Chi-produccd “Hawkins Falls,” 
“The Bennetts” and “Ding Dong 
School” rolling along as estab- 
lished properties (“Welcome Trav- 
elers” is now completely agency- 
produced) and no other major ven- 
tures on the upcoming agenda. 
Park has been cast! rig about for 
some . additional ‘ low-budgeled 
sleeper formats worthy of eventual 
home office attention. 

Since a rural-targeted show, 
would invade a hitherto unex- 
plored and unexploited network 
territory, and since the Windy City 
would be its natural point of 
origin, Park has started sketching 
the outlines. Eddy Arnold is be- 
ing considered as possible host for 
the show. 

A couple of telestars are going 
out to the hustings to meet their 
constituents. Old hand at the barnr 
storm trick is Gene Autry, the 
Wrigley CBS’er, whose 50-city trek 
will be launched Jan. 8, opening 
in Duluth and winding up in Bir- 
mingham Feb. 28. In troupe will 
be regulars Pat Buttram, Rufe 
Davis, maestro Carl Cotner and 
Cass County Boys, plus the nag 

Other singer-actor going safari 
is Dennis Pay, but only for a week 
starting Jan. 27, in behalf of his 
NBC-TV sponsor, RCA Victor. 
He’ll kick off in Chi for two days, 
then New York (Jan. 29-31) and 
one-nighters in Philly, Detroit and 

Wednesday, January 6, 1954 

forty •eighth ^ nhivertary 





( President > AFTRA) 

About 30 years ago a shotgun wedding took place that shook the 
theatrical profession to its backdrop. After centuries of living apart 
in a virginal world of its own, “The Theatre” was wooed, won and 
. taken in commercial, wedlock by Big Business, which heretofore had 
' been content to buy tickets at the boxofTice. With the invention of 
the radio tube, the performer suddenly became pregnant with adver- 
tising possibilities, and the American sponsor, being at heart an honest 
man, hastened to the altar with an astonished and‘.slightly suspicious 
• bride. 

The intervening years have shown this union to be one of mutual 
advantage, if not complete compatibility. The results of this "marriage 
of convenience” on public and performer alike have been revolutionary. 
The immediate effect on the public, of course, was to bring the theatre 
to the audience instead, of the audience to the theatre. The actor, 
now giving his performance in the living-room, was no longer depend- 
ent on the sale of tickets, the weather, Christmas week or Lent. With 
no sleeper jumps, defaulting managements nor even a curtain rising, 
he found himself playing to 10 years of audience in one night. Instead 
of gambling on the hit or flop of a theatrical venture, he tied his 
fate to the advertising budget of a soap company, or the sales cam- 
paign of a cosmetic. The actor’s rough road had unexpectedly branched 
into shining new highways which sped him on not only to new fields 
of activity; new ways of making money, but to keener competition, 

: new demands on his resourcefulness, talent and adaptability. Facing 
. now the complexities of radio and television, finding himself an im- 
. portant item im the advertising plan of a tobacco firm, he discovered 
. that he must now be artist and accountant, performer and business- 
man. With his livelihood depending on many single "jobs” each month 
instead of one or two “engagements” a year, the necessity for a stricter 
management of his professional life became apparent. And the crying 
need for a pooling of interests soon brought about successful efforts 
to create new unions to assure proper uniformity and organization of 
his working Conditions. Thus, as the stage actor many years ago fought 
for and won the blessings that came with the birth of the Actors' 
Equity Association, as the motion picture performer found protection 
in the Screen Actors’ Guild, sp the radio and television actors, singers, 
announcers, dancers, specialty acts, etc,,- formed new uriits-^-the Amer- 
ican Federation of Radio Artists and Television Authority, now suc- 
— cessf ully- -merged ‘into- ■AFTRA. Today, the 4 A’s (Associated -Actors and 
Artistes of America), with five thriving major branches, each repre- 
senting a different performing craft,, stands as a triumphant refutation 
of the old fear that “temperamental” actors could not or should not 
get "mixed up” with unions. 




Examining the Ledger 

For the benefit of any doubting Thomases, any who still question 
the value of union membership, let us take stock. We could go back 
over 50 years and find inspiration in the story of “The White Rats.” 
that original group of vaudeville performers who united to fight the 
unfair practices of the old booking offices, My late father-in-law, 
J. C. Nugent, talked glowingly of those early struggles and pointed 
with pride to the fact that they set the pattern for Our present day 
performer, unions. But let us take AFTRA as our example. What 
good is it? What does the member get for his money? More. I think, 
than even the most ardent member realizes. In addition to the privi- 
lege of belonging to one of the most highly respected labor unions 
in the A. F. of L. roster, it should hardly be necessary to list such 
obvious advantages as welfare funds, death benefit plans, etc. 

In trying to picture the position of a performer without benefit of 
unions, we might compare him to a soldier without an army or head- 
quarters, or to a salesman without a reputable business organization 
behind him. Unlike the isolated actor of yesterday, desperately trying 
to decide how much salary he dare ask without risking the job, the 
union member today can start his negotiations (if, indeed, any are 
necessary) with the solid, unalterable backing of his union code, 
respected alike on both sides of the desk. Surely one of the greatest 
services of the union is to take the performer out of economic com- 
petition with his fellow performer and to bring him the dignity and 
strength that are inherent In a well-run American trade union. 

Estimating the actual financial benefits accruing from union mem- 
bership is largely guesswork. But a backward glance reveals some in- 
teresting figures. The New York radio actor of 1936, for instance, often 
had ho choice but to accept a fee of $10 or perhaps $12.50 for a 15- 
minute show. Today the AFTRA minimum is $30.50 for the same job. 
Half-hour radio programs were pretty much take-it-or-leave-it affairs, 

The performer today, through his. union, has brought stability and 
responsibility to the profession, helping himself and his employer alike. 
And, best of all, with an organization controlled and governed by its 
o\vn working members in the true American way, the performer can 
face the hazards of his calling with greater confidence and pride. 

e Shows They Never Did 



It’s All Over 
In 60 Minutes 


{NBC-TV Scene Designer) 

Art was long and Time was*fleet- 
ing, till TV changed all that. No 
contemporary art form is briefer 
or more transitory, for no matter 
what blood, sweat and tears go into 
getting a program on the air, gen- 
erally speaking it’s all over in an 

If there were time to brood this 
might lead to interesting frustra- 
tions, but the designer is so im- 
mediately involved in plans for the 
next show he’s too busy to think 
about the fleeting nature of his 

An infinite variety of tasks and 
problems create this “busy-ness.” 
Broadway musical comedy budgets 
these days run to $250,000. but it 
is hoped by those who underwrite 
them, that they are making a long- 
term investment. Next to this the 
$6,000 budget I had for “Suor An- 
gelica,” one of the NBC Opera 
Series, may seem modest, but when 
you consider it was for a single 
one-hour performance it becomes 
rather substantial. To justify that 
kind of budget and realize the 
scope it permits calls for endless 
book-work, deskruork, shop- work 
and scrounging around in prop 

The book- work starts when the 
scene designer gets his assignment. 
For the recent color telecast of 
“Carmen” I did research on Span- 
ish architecture, and studied the 
Opera's libretto. From this read- 
ing came a departure from the usu- 
al scenic treatment of “Carmen,” 
for in the fourth act, I transferred 
the scene usually played outside 
the arena to a confined area just 
inside the gates, which helped con- 
vey Carmen’s feeling of being 

After research comes the prep- 
aration of rough sketches which are 
discussed at a planning meeting 
with the production staff-producer, 
director, light-man, etc. The de- 
signer emerges from this knowing 
where he must provide free-space 
for camera movement, what kind 
of fabrics will be used in the cos- 
tumes (information he needs so his 
walls will not war with them in 
confusing effects) the amount of 
time available for moving sets, and 
the amount of space for setting 

The preparation of final sketch- 
es, done in color even for black 
and white broadcasts, follows. Af- 
ter their approval, the designer 
prepares his working drawings to 
scale, and paint elevations for the 
carpenter and paint crews, who 
perform the miracle of transform- 
ing an idea on paper into three-di- 
mensional reality. When lie isn’t 
needed in the shop, he goes out in- 
to the outside world and looks for 

Three and a half, years designing 
TV sets has taught me there’s no 
such thing as a routine operation 
and no permanent record of one’s 
efforts. It may seem futile that the 
fruits of so much time, money and 
effort are disposed of after an 
hour’s use, but the fact is this pro- 
vides a healthy climate for the 
creative artist. With no time to 
muse on past triumphs the scene 
designer cannot rest on his laurels 
but must progress in his work by 
meeting ever-changing challenges. 

iHHitimiMkiMmmHiimimwuimiMiittmiiiHinHMiiumiMHtD-, JLW A f"* 
tmimiimimMimuumimiMHMMmmimiiiimniiKtiiiiMMfiiuttiiD V ItItA V4 DEiiN vFjT JT 1 

This 1 8 Your Life? 

EDWARDS: — Now, Mr. Jones, you met the principal of your school 
who came out of a sick bed, all the way from Mapawonee, Oklahoma. 

J ONES : — ( TEARFULLY ) Good old Mapawonee. 

EDWARDS : — You’ve met your long lost friend whom you hadn’t 
seen for 40 years, and the adopted daughter of your brother-in-law’s 
cousin who came from Tabulu, Japan. How' does that make you 

; feel? / 

JONES: — ( Sobbing ) Just wonderful. Wonderful. 

EDWARDS: -—Well now, hold tight, for an even bigger surprise. Do 
you remember working in a little town near St. Louis? 

JONES:— Mackushla, Missouri? " i 

EDWARDS:-^- Mackushla, Missouri. Right. You clerked in a bank 
for $38 a week. • ' • 

JONES: — (Worriedly) That’s right. 

EDWARDS: —Well, here’s Mr. Hawkins, the manager of that bank, 
Mr. Jones; Come on out. Mr. Hawkins. (MR. HAWKINS, A 

EDWARDS:— Do you remember him, Mr. Hawkins? 

HAWKINS That’s Jones, ail right. 


EDWARDS:— Well, Mr. Jones, you worked in Mr. Hawkins’ bank for 
four years and then one morning vou didn’t show’ up. Is that right? 

JONES:— (LOOKING FOR THE EXIT) If you don't mind, Mr. 
Edwards- — 

EDWARDS: — ( EXUBERANTLY ) In fad. you never showed up. 

Ha; ha, ha! , and at the end cf the month the bank found out it 
was short $40,000. 

HA WKINS : -Forty-five. 

JONES: — I’ve got to leave now. 

EDWARDS: — Wait a minute. Look who’s coming. Mr. Jones. The 
Sheriff of Mackushla,' Missouri. (SHERIFF ENTERS; 

SHERIFF : —Howdy, Jones. 

EDWARDS;— -Yoti haven't seen Mr. Jones in 10 years, have you, 

SHERIFF: — That’s right. We got a tip he was in a saloon in 

Genesee. I got there just as he was leaving. 1 fired five shots 
but he got away in his car. 

EDWARDS':— Boy! I ll bet that was exciting. . 

JONES : — You can keep my prizes. Mr. Edwards, I'm leaving. 

EDWARDS: — Hold it a second. Mr. U&re’s. someone else who 

,wants to see you. Mr. Wilkins. 

JONES:— Wilkins? 

EDWARDS:— Yes. after you left Genesee, you crossed the state line, 
putting your offense under the jurisdiction of the Federal authori- 
ties. Folks, how about a big hand for Mr. Wilkins of the FBL 
MR. JONES ) Surprised, aren't you, Mr. Jones? 

JONES: — That's one way of looking at it. 

EDWAR.DS: — Well, we’ve gots lots more surprises; Here are three 
depositors. Mr, Hyman, Mrs. Owen and Mr. Bridges, who have 
claims against vou for the money yoii absconded with. (THEY 

MR. BRIDGES:— These are subpoenas to appear in court. 

EDWARDS: — How about some applause. Folks. (THE AUDIENCE 

EDWARDS: — Well, our time was up anyway. Tune in next week 

Whai’t My Line? 

DALY: — Well, panel, so far you've all been stumped and Mrs. Beaver 
has won $45. You’ve got one more chance. Let's- see now, Mrs: 
Beaver is self-employed, you won’t know the commodity she sells,, 
but it's recognizable without the wrapper, and it’s used in a house.. 

CERF:-r 7 -I’ll take a. last guess. Mrs. Beaver sells bananas! 

DALY: — No. I’m sorry, panel. You didn’t -get this one, but it was 
pretty tough. Mrs. Beaver is a stripper. (ALL LAUGH'. Thank 
you' for coming. Mrs. Beaver, and here's your 50 bucks — 1 mean 

♦ ■ * * 

You Bet Your Life 

MARX: — Oh. I'm sorry contestants. The 30lh President of the United 
States was Calvin Coolidge. You lose the jackpot of S9.000. 

CONTESTANT:— Oh nerts! 

MARX : — Well, whaddya know. You win $100 anyway. Nerts is the 
magic word! 


Beauty and Health Authority of DuMont-TV 
Star * Producer of Daily 1:00-1:30 "CLAIRE MANN TV SHOW 
Dedicated to Glamourizing Women of All Natione 


Forty-eighth ■ Amuvfrfary,, 

tettiffg a Re-RM For Yrar 

Continued from page 93 

: , t . • 

economic life, within the sphere of their morals and ethics 
-as they understand and accept them. . 

A story is told well if it is written with such artfulness 
that the listener gets involved and entangled, that he 
lives through the ordeals and triumphs of the characters as 
if they were his own ordeals and triumphs. Subconscious-, 
ly. he applies the experiences of the characters to himself 
and his .own problems. In short, he has received and 

understood the “message.” . ‘ . 

‘ The good story can be recognized by three distinct 
signs: It is entertaining. Its theme emerges from the 
contemporary stream of life. It has a definite purpose of 
conveying a message, . 

The theme is the foundation of a story. It must be clear, 
precise, ar.d without distracting ornaments. 

At a time when communications were slow, when 
churches, schools, newspapers and political organizations 
failed to remedy blatant injustices in the social order of 
the day, the Schillers, the Ibsens, the Strindbergs and the 
Hauptmanns stood up and screamed their accusations from 
the pulpit tf the stage into the faces of the mighty. In_^ 
strong s.ories, they delivered dramatized. editorials against 
the forced draft of youth of their country to serve in for- 
eign wars, against the lack of pension for invalid officers, 
against the introduction of machinery in manufacturing 
plants without thought Of the fate of the dismissed laborer, 
against the enslavement of women in the home and in 
the community, etc. They made the stage a moralizing, 
political platform; their books; became fighting pamphlets; 
they caused revolutions on' one hand and inflamed will to 
resistance o:i the other. 

Many ef their themes, so very important a lifetime ago, 
have lost their impact, because wrongs have been righted. 
Our communication system of today, in combination With 
our internal political order, is so efficient that the writer 
very often comes too late with a dramatized problem^ be- 
cause city hall or the women’s clubs cr the editorials and 
columns ef the newspapers have taken care of the problem 
and made it a . point of public discussion, which usually 
brings the desired results, ' 


human spirit. He must take sides, or he will remain a 
writer out of contact with, his time. In our race against a 
communist-inspired writing, we must write the better 
stories and win the greater audiences. Our better stories 
must .prove: 

the Value of life of the individual 

the value of the individual's good relations with others 

the value of our way of life in a free world 

the value of our great past, applied to the present and 

Television is the broadest platform ever presented to the 
modefiT wFirer^td" carry his" themeiffprwafd' andlefliis 
message be heard by the greatest mass of people. -The 
legitimate stage reaches only a few, the motion picture 
reaches millions, but television reaches tens of millions al- 
most hourly, day and night. Its penetration and convinc- 
ing power are unbelievable. 

The tiresome argument of the motion picture people and 
exhibitors that television is a hateful competitor must stop, 
because both have only one real competitor: Communism. 
If this competitor wins the souls of the people, the fight 
among movie and TV people wili be remembered as a most 
stupid act of fratricide: 

All differences must be eliminated. Peace and unity 
must rule within. The spirits must be raised, not the 
prices. The art of powerful writing must be cultivated, 
not the haggling for higher royalties. 

The writers are our last and strongest hope — that they 
will deliver the bread and the wine. 

Wednesday, January 0, 1954 

herent, in “selling” a show. We know how quickly the 
public reacts to good taste, quality, entertainment and 
story values in production. As producers we see to it that 
these values are never lacking ih our own shows. 

Finally, as producer-distributors, we do not fear to enter 
jntp comprehensive production, schedules, for we have 
confidence in our own sales power. Since last January 
for example, we have had one or more of pur shows ii 
constant production. This has made it possible for us to 
assemble and retain capable production personnel who 
are secure In their jobs and therefore very much con- 
cerned with the quality and cost of the shows which they 
are helping to create. 

Our dual role as producer and distributor has been an 
Important factor in the widespread distribution which was 
obtained- in so short a time for our shows. Qur plans for 
the- year ahead call for further expansion of the producer- 
distributor policy. . - 1- - — — ^ — L -— 

; ^Continued from pace 91 

A Weapon for Victory 


Then what is there to write about? 

Today we have more burning themes at our fingertips 
than ever. Our. world is divided in two great camps : the 
free world and the enslaved world. More than ever, today 
we need dramatists to explore and exploit the theme of 
human relations.. This is a theme that has no value in the 
enslaved part ef the world. It could become the secret 
weapon for victory in the hands of the writers of the 
free world. 

The fight between the two worlds is a savage one. The 
Aristotelian and the communist philosophies of Writing are 
locked in battle. Both are eager to win the masses; 

Aristotle teaches that writing is poetry. Poetry is Art. 
Art is Beauty. Beauty uplifts the soul. A soul uplifted by 
the experience of this art will become strong to stand up 
under the gnawing doubt in the values of our existence. It 
will feel secure. Man’s uplifted soul will feel the nearness 
of God within him, and will lose the fear of the ultimate 
death cf everything living. 

Aristotelian philosophy is the victory over animalism, 
barbarism, over negativism and anarchism. Shakespeare’s, 
Mozart’s, Lzssiag’s, Albert Schweitzer's works are living in 
the realm of this philosophy and have made the world a 
richer and better place 1 to live in. 

The communist credo of writing in our time and our 
world is the exact opposite. Its- aim is to tear down,- to 
plant doubts in our hearts, to sow uncertainty, to deny God 
— to make us feel insecure and spiritually helpless 1 As 
remedy, they offer us their alternative: That man doesn’t 
need to search for God, since man himtelf is God and that 
he doesn’t have to recognize anything above him, with the 
exception of Super-God: the State! 

It is a tempting credo for human beings who live with- 
out guidance and conviction within themselves and are 
insecure within their family, their community arid their 

It is the writer's duty to enter this battle for the 


(President, Guild Films ) 

. * : ... 

We began producing TV programs against our will; We 
never intended to produce programs. Program produc- 
tion literally was forced upon ii$. > 

Originally organized as a distribution firm. Guild Films 
set up an efficient and experienced staff and system for 
economically and expeditiously handling and servicing 
the sale of TV show series. But our search for sizable 
shows was hampered by three unfortunate conditions. 

Where satisfactory shows were contemplated, but not yet 
made, most of the budding eager-to-go-into-business pro- 
ducers had little more than an idea; They usually needed 
almost complete, financial backing, and very few of them 
appreciated either the importance or the cost of such 

Where satisfactory shows already were in production, 
the producers were unwilling as a rule to accept what we 
considered to be reasonable distribution terms. These 
producers felt that their show, was all important and that 
the busiifss of selling, promoting and servicing it was 
just one of those necessary evils and of relatively small 
value. ' 

Then, of course, there were all kinds of shows which we 
considered unsatisfactory. 

In the face of these conditions we reluctantly decided to 
produce our own shows. The first of these was Liberate, 
followed by "Life With Elizabeth” and “The Joe Palooka 
Story.” All three are in almost constant production. 

Our experience as producer-distributors has proved for 
us the desirability of the combination. 

sures exist today to do just this. Every pressure that tries 
to make television follow the old radio pattern is a pres- 
sure toward a fragmentized service. The argument runs 
as follows: In network operation, when a client insists 
on a low-circulation show he likes, instead of a show which 
fits into ah overall programming strategy, and which main-, 
tains the basip circulation which is what is paid for by the 
time rates; or when an agency uses pressure to increase 
commercial time, or cut production rates, or refuse pre- 
emption rights to the network, etc., then the momen- 
tum of the network operation is slowed, its resources cut, 
and the proponents of the fragmentized service are aided. 
The latter include many of the syndicate companies, tal- 
ent companies, motion picture companies'' and companies 
under their control, as well as some, of the . advertising 
agencies, some station representatives, etc.'' The general 
pressure. Of these forces is to shift the money from the 
facilities or time-buying side of the business to the talent 
or program side. "When this is done in a network like 
NBC, by the network itself selling a- key program, part of 
the income is set aside for our public service response 
bility. The other operators generally make the public 
service responsibility a matter for the stations, and main- 
tain that they are only in the entertainment or amusement 
business, or in the business of selling goods. 

Wanning Up Affiliates 

Pulse on Public 

Our intimate knowledge of the buying market enables us 
to determine what constitutes a salable show. We pick for 
production the kind of shows we feel the public wants, 
and therefore the ones which can be depended upon to 
"payoff” for the* sponsors. In fact, our decision to pro- 
duce a particular show is largely dictated by our own 
understanding of the market demand. 

Our sales commitments are guaranteed by our own pro- 
duction capacity. We therefore are able to avoid one of 
the pitfalls which exist where the producer and distribu- 
tor are not one and the same. 

As distributors we fully appreciate the problems in- 
— — ~ ■■ : — 

Awareness of these possibilities has already created a 
change of heart among executives in many affiliated sta* ■ 
tions who now realize that their future is in this- •‘'maga- 
zine concept” type of broadcasting which has emerged in 
the last few years. More and more of the advertising lead- 
ers are coming around to this belief, although in the day-to- 
day operations, it is hard for them to change their pre- 
viously taken positions. . v 

But with all the troubles, it is still an exhilarating 
future that we have. One of the major influences which 
will work for our success in the great network service is 
4he increasing awareness of opinion makers that the leaders 
of advertising, and particularly the agency heads; are far 
more responsible for the new standard of living that has 
come to our country than they were previously credited 
with. As public recognition of the advertising agency re- 
sponsibility in building our economic structure grows, so 
too will the advertising fraternity’s wVarehess of their 
responsibility toward the good health of the media they 
support, and their responsibility through their buying 
actions in determining the kind of program service Amer- 
ica will have. It is not as showmen, as in radio, but again 
as advertising men, that the agencies will move ahead, 
using soon the power of color to create again the incentives 
which will drive the people’s productivity forward to a 
new and higher standard of living. As they realize that 
this;, can be done more economically under an advertising- 
buying rather than a program-buying strategy, and that the 
former also will enable the broadcaster to support a far 
more incisive and complete schedule, and hence a more 
vital, useful and enriching instrument, then the agencies 
Will overwhelmingly support the NBC efforts. 


, By TED 

(Director?, DuMont Television Network) 


I’ll never forget those words: 

“Come back in five years.” 

The occasion was one of the first 
calls I ever made as a television 
time salesman for DuMont — to a 
New York advertising agency 
which is no longer in existence. 

After I regaled the radio direc- 
tor of the agency for 45 minutes 
about the wonders of the new tele- 
vision medium, and tried to sell 
him the limited New York-Phila- 
delphia network we then had in 
late 1947, he dismissed me casu-- 
ally with those memorable words, 
‘ Come back in five years.” 

We have with us today a situa- 
tion which seems to parallel 
closely what we were up against 
in. those early television selling 

I refer to our present attempts 
to sell UHF stations throughout 
the U.S. 

The FCC’s new allocation plan, 
providing for 500 stations in the 
VHF and at least 1,500 in the 
UHF, makes quite clear just how 
important UHF will be in Amer- 
ica’s television future: 

Use of UHF will giye the coun- 
try a truly competitive television 
system, will assure all major mar- 
kets as many stations as they can 

support economically, and will 
provide viewers with a wide choice 
of programs. 

But we in television, and espe- 
cially those of us who meet Madi- 
son Avenue advertising executives, 
have been acutely aware that 
there has been some skepticism 
as to the ability of UHF to cover 
a market. 

That’s what makes me recall my 
early days of selling VHF tele- 
vision. Arid that’s why it is com- 
forting to remember that not so 
long, ago these same agencies 
doubted that VHF would soon 
reach enough market penetration 
to constitute a major advertising 

Let me make it clear first of all 
that I am not going to ask any 
advertisers to pioneer in the de- 
velopment of UHF. But I am ask- 
ing advertisers not to apply a dif- 
ferent and tougher set of stand- 
ards to UHF values than they do 
to VHF. Nothing in the arithmetic 
of cost-per-thousand can logically 
carry a UHF or VHF any more 
than docs the television screen in 
the viewer’s home. 

Let’s have a quick look back at 
the evolution of television net-? 
work programs in 1947, *48 and 
’49. We had some tough going. 
We kept hammering for adver- 
tisers to extend their network time 
purchases and we kept being re- 

buffed for_supposed lack of circu- 
lation-in spite of the fact that 
our rates were commensurate with 
circulation actually at hand. Usu- 
ally the advertisers just didn’t 
want to be bothered, even to go 
into Boston and Philadelphia .by 

We remember how hard it was 
in those early days to develop suc- 
cessful sales patterns. We remem- 
ber the steady evolution of the 
first big shows: Old Gold’s “Origi- 
nal Amateur Hour,” which was 
DuMont’s first network hour Sale; 
Procter and Gamble’s first TV 
show,' “Fashions Qn Parade;” 
General Food’s “Captain. Video,” 
TV’s first big cross-the-board sale 
to a single sponsor; and the first 
multiple-sponsored high budget 
network programs, "Cavalcade of 
Bands” arid “Cavalcade of Stars.” 

In a general way, the same sort 
Of development Work Will now 
have to take place with the wide- 
spread opening of UHF stations. 

One DuMont contribution to the 

The ‘New* Radio 


Radio will never die note: 

State of Ohio is planning a 
$750,000, nine-station, five- 
channel, two-way radio hook- 
up for police communications 
on its $324,000,000, 241-mile 

Transmissions will be au- 
thorized from 152 to 174 meg- 
acycles in the VHF band. 
There has been no call for a 
program manager or an- 

promotion of a realistic . attitude 
towards UHF took the form re- 
cently of a cost-per-thousand com- 
parison between a substantial 
number of UHF stations and VHF 
outlets of similar set potential. 

. This study, which has attracted 
a lot of favorable comment among 
agencies, made graphic the fact — 
as. orie example— that a half-dozen 
of the top UHF stations yielded a 
better cost-per-thousand than 73 
VHF outlets much more heavily 
bought and readily accepted. 

This comparison disregarded en- 
tirely the special inducements 
offered temporarily by many UHF 5 
operators,' the spectacular rate of 
growth in almost all instances, and 
any dependence On the Widely- 
held belief that those individuals 
who have made real investments 
in receiver conversions form an 
especially zealous and responsive 
group of television viewers. 

Each "operator of ope of the new 
UHF stations must make a huge 
investment — $500,000 to $1,000,000 
—and at the same time he must be 
willing to take a rate commensu- 
rate with circulation which hardly 
begins to airiortize his investment. 

Here it is well for the advertiser 
to realize that, in spite of all these 
UHF stations being opened, there 
is a strong likelihood two to three 
years from' now— if business con- 
tinues firing the same curve it has 
for the past five years— that we 
will once again be facing a time 
situation of acute scarcity in es- 
tablished TV markets. 

We all know what the situation 
as to time shortages Was in tele- 

vision in 1953, even though more 
than 200 stations had gone on the 
air in the year arid a half after 
the lifting of the freeze. In spite 
of this rapid advance the problefti . 
of networking was still far from 
solved. All four networks faced a 
major difficulty in getting network 
station clearance. It has been a 
catch-as-catch-can situation in try- 
ing to satisfy advertisers’ orders. 

But With the right kind of sup- 
port UHF television can change 
this situation. As each day passes 
arid more stations are built, the 
closer we can come to four really 
complete national i networks.,,., to ... 
take care of virtually all foresee- 
able needs of our advertisers. 

The only condition in Which a. 
national advertiser can live in se- 
curity with his time franchise is 
in the availability of sufficient 
network stations to give him na- 
tionwide clearance for; all major 
markets according to his needs. 
And that means full development 
of UHF. 

But if UHF operators do not 
get advertising support; if they 
have to fold up, we will find that 
there has . been created a com- 
pletely deadlocked monopoly, situ- 
ation in which a comparatively few 
major advertisers are favored- 

So, again, I am not asking the 
nation’s advertisers to pioneer In 
UHF— but only to Include UHF 
markets in their budgets, with an 
eye to advertising’s own future 

Let’s not hear those words: 
‘•‘Come back in five years.” 

Let’s not go back to 1953! 

Wednesday, ; January 6 y 1954 






Have w<? “scraped the botton of the barrel" on talent, as has been 

asserted recently?: No — decidedly no!! 

Never haye there been so many applications for auditions for 
'‘Original Aniateur Hour as at present. And never previously has 
the percentage of talent been so acceptable. That 
applies also, to the obtaining of jobs by talent 
after it has appeared on “Original Amateur 

Hour.” . ■ ■ ' . 

The list of persons who have gone on from our 
show to places in the entertainment world within 
tlie~lastr -f ive^-y ears fills two single spaced type- 
written pages. . 

In the 18 years of “Original Amateur Hour’s” 
history there has been no,, greater tempo than 
n0 \v. And opportunity never has been so immedi- 
ate as at present. From all over the NBC-TV net- 
work one obtains instantaneous response to a good 
act an interesting personality. And the vision of _ . M 

others appearing draws an increasing number of ieft 1CK 

requests for; auditions. 

Wc are bringing acts into New York for television appearances 
from every part of the continent. The most remote hamlet may 
produce as good an act as the largest metropolitan center; This 
procedure requires organization,- experience and judgment— but the 
effort, the "patience, and the cost pay off. 

Two TV-cplumnists— Charlton Wallace in the Cincinnati Times-Star. 
and Norman Clark in the Baltimore News-P.Ogt— recently noted that, 
unlike certain network talent shows that feature professional per- 
formers, the “Original Amateur Hour” has no trouble whatsoever in 
rounding up a great deal of good talent. I believe that is because, 
as John Lester remarked in the Newark Star-Eagle and other papers, 
“Original Amateur Hour” is accepted as an institution. Its “gradu- 
ates’ are in every phase of the amusement world. 'and its method of 
projecting the talent, rather than the m.c., gives the break to the 

But no show — or institution— can live on tradition. We are con- 
stantly alert, searching, auditioning. We adopt every improved means 
of projection. We went to television even before there was a network. 
Except for one dramatic show, we are the oldest program on that 
medium. , 

.tele vision has broadened the field for talent. Where they pre- 
viously had no opportunity in radio, the dancer, the paritomimist, the 
magician and other silent specialty acts are now seen regularly by. 
millions of, people. When they appear on “Amateur Hour,” job of- 
fers frequently come to them before they are off the air. 

Television also gives the hopeful aspirant in a far-away place an 
opportunity to see, as well as hear, what is going over. Thus, the base 
of our- talent source is broadened. 

I: find-, also, that talent is improving in quality. And viewers and 
listeners, are quick to sense that. An artistic dancer, who had made a 
serious study of the art; won three consecutive times a few weeks ago 
by overwhelming vote of our coast-to-coast audience. This young man 
exemplifies the upbeat. . 

I must confess, I enjoy working with these folk, trying to uncover 
their talent and project it,, and entering into* their spirit of zest and 
hopefulness. , Oh, there's no shortage of talent! The problem is to 
marshal it to the best advantage— and that’s wjiat we try to do. From 
the volume of mail that flows in I gather that we're making a lot of 
happy with, our. efforts. 

Television is now installed in 
two-thirds of all the homes in 
America. By the end of 1954, it is 
estimated, more than 35,000,000 
families will own sets, and audi- 
ences of more thap 60,000,000 will 
watch a single network program. 

This fabulous audience, consid-. 
ered in the . light of its buying 
power, will make television a giant 
in merchandising. It is already 
the greatest single pipeline to the 
American consumer, a fact of 
which most, business men have 
only recently begun to be aware. 

But this year, American busi- 
ness will . be preoccupied as never 
before with the job of moving 
merchandise through the . impact 
of advertising, 

In fact, the 
very health of 
our national 
economy may 
depend upon 
the success of 
their efforts 
during 1954. 

tell us that 
we are enter- 
ing a period 
when the pro- 
duct i o n of 
consumer goods will reach an all- 
time peak. Fortunately, at the 
same time, they point out that 
private incomes and savings are 
also at a high level, and that the 
nation will enjoy, continuing pros- 
perity if only the average wage 
earner can be induced to spend 
a portion of his earnings and sav- 
ings for the products which will 
improve his standard of living. 

To this end, advertisers will 
spend a record $8,000,000,000 dur- 
ing the coming year. But they 
will expect unprecedented results 
from every media sales, sales, 
and more sales. 

3. L. Van Volkenburg 



Tele-Sessions simply means tele- 
vision for business meetings— ses- 
sions. that is. The electronic 
miracle thus applied modernizes 
old ways of holding meetings for 
dealers, salesmen, stockholders, 
and buyers .. 

Distinguished from home TV be- 
cause it is a completely private 
system — not for the public— a 
c'.osed circuit Tele-SeSsion is ex- 
hibited only for the important few 
chosen by the company holding the 

Tele-Sessions teed off last year 
with a coast-to-coast dealer meet- 
ing for James Lees & Sons; manu- 
facturers of carpets. National mer- 
chandising policies were set forth 
by Lees’ top management to their 
dealers simultaneously across the 
nation, with productive sales and 
promotion results. 

Within the past year, A. T. & T., 
Atlantic Refining, Esso, Ford, Phil- 
co, General Electric, Westinghouse, 
and many other large companies 
have used closed-circuit TV. Not 
only did the top companies begin 
no-Tir oiT m^sSrnn^Trnr The * 
country’s topper, President Eisen- 
hower, was televised closed-circuit 
lrom the White House into the 
herd Dearborn plant for impressive 
. dedication ceremonies. 

reie-Sessions also moved Into 
color TV this past fall. For the 
h'\st time, a novel hat style- show 
mi’ retail store buyers on large- 
screen color TV was presented by 
A-ce and Disney. Hats. With images 
approximately 30 square feet, the 
impact of color TV was great upon 
the store buyers invited by Lee. . 
ftf , 1 ortly thereafter, proceedings 
oi the ,58th annual National Assn, of 
manufacturers Congress of Ameri- 
‘•n Industry were televised in 
ai ge-screen color, television to a 

u thousand NAM members and 

v ’ a new record audience, for 

^i‘ u in |, an y type of color televi- 

T "_ e . color pictures were su- 

a dd the tint telecast became 

i- ^ le several thousand 

Already clbsed-circuit TV has 


(Pres:, Theatre Network TV ) 

had some good type casting, with 
well-known commercial pitchmen 
and women like. Kate Smith, Betty 
Furness, and Hex Marshall— and 
some excellent untypical casting in 
President Eisenhower. Corpora- 

(Continued on page 190) 

Television, the newest medium 
of them all. is now prepared to 
take up this challenge from Amer- 
ican business. On the strength of 
its history alone, it can be confi- 
dent of doing more than its share 
of the merchandising job. With 
its rapidly expanding audience and 
its decreasing costs per-thousand 
viewers, television can deliver 
sales more quickly and economic- 
ally than any other medium. 

Door-to-door selling has enjoyed 
i a huge success in this country be- 
j cause it gave the salesman an 
| opportunity to demonstrate his 
product to the consumer at the 


(President, CBS Television) 

location of its ultimate use. Tele- 
vision now makes this same door- 
to-door principle of selling pos- 
sible on a multi-million scale. On 
one single network program, a 
manufacturer can create an almost 
unbelievable consumer demand for 
his product before it is stocked in 
a single store. 

Television’s merchandising suc- 
cess stories are already numerous, 
but they are truly just beginning: 
Soon a new element will be added 
to television— color. Now that the 
FCC has finally given its approval 
to the NTSC standards of broad- 
casting. color television for the 
public will be a reality within the 
year. It will give products of all 
kinds an eye appeal and believe- 
ability they have never achieved 
before in any other medium. Pack- 
aging and display will take on a 
new meaning. Entire campaigns 
■ y/ill be styled especially for the 
color cameras. Most important of 
all, many advertisers who have 
never used television — manufac- 
turers in the clothing and decora- 
tion fields. for instance— will pe 
attracted to this medium by the 
unique presentation which color 
alone can give to their creations. 
Consumer demand for these new 
products., as well as many familiar 
ones seen for the first time in 
color, is sure to have a stimulating 
effect on our entire economy. In 
time, color television will become 
one of the most potent forces for 
economic progress in our country. 

What is the future of this giant 
in the marketplace? Will television 
be content to play just a leading 
roie in influencing the buying hab- 
its of the nation? Or will it. as 
some fear, establish such a singu- 
lar pipeline to the consumer that 
it ultimately will over-shadow and 
engulf all other forms of adver- 

Such a trend does not seem to 
be indicated by recent surveys. 
For despite the fabulous growth 
of network television, it has not 
achieved its success at the expense 
of other media. Rather, on the 
other hand, newspapers, maga- 
zines. Sunday supplements and 
other media have all benefited 
with a proportionate share of the 
increased advertising budgets 
which have ballooned largely from 
the success of recent television 
merchandising. According to an 
impartial survey conducted bv the 
Magazine Advertising , Bureau, 
most of the money appropriated 
for network television is new 

money, and not diverted from the 
budgets in other media. In other 
words,; television is bringing; and 
will continue to bring, many new 
advertisers into the market. 

It is almost an axiom in thc acl- 
vertising business that “the more 
efficient* a medium can become, 
the greater the share of the sell- 
ing load it will be expected . to 
carry.” Television’s boo min g 
growth may be directly attributed 
to this principle. During 1953. the" 
CBS Television Network alone re- 
ceived a 40?c increase in total 
dollar value of billings, the great- 
est gain of any network. To be 
sure, this, increase is. in part due 
to the addition of 76 new station 
outlets this year 'CBS Televisidn 
more than doubled its number of 
stations in 1953). But of more im- 
portance to the advertiser is the 
new flexibility which has been 
made available by the participat- 
ing sponsorship p’an. making it 
possible for many bi-sineyses with 
modest budgets to enloy the bene- 
fits of network telev'sion without 
the cost of going it alone. On 
many important network shows 
like the Sunday afternoon ■■Omni- 
bus” program, the p’en .of snared 
costs has proved to be a Tremen- 
dous boon to advertisers. In addi- 
tion, our 15-mihv’te segment p’ati 
for daytime network shows, by 
which an advertise” may.' buy as 
many segments as he chooses on 
a daily, weck’y ; .or -seaisor.rl basis, 
has brought, television within the 
means of mary new advertisers. 

Television’s continuing growth 
will depend, to a large degree, 
upon its adaptability to th.e chang- 
ing needs of advertisers, large and 
small. But our chief responsibility, 
as alwajs, will be to maintain the 
kind of qua’itv programs which 
will assure advertisers of reaching 
the biggest pnssib’e audiences. As 
long as We fulfi l this primary re- 
sponsibility. network television 
Will continue to be the most effec- 
tive and economical means, of 
moving merchandise on a. mass 
scale across the . counters of